Do we dare admit the embarrassing truth that sometimes we are bored with our Bibles? If we do, we find ourselves in surprisingly large company.
Recently, Crossway surveyed 6,000 people on their Bible reading habits. The second most common reason given for not reading the Bible regularly was a lack of “motivation and discipline.”
Rather than just clenching our fists and trying harder, let’s look a little deeper at two factors that are likely stifling the desire for the Bible that we wish we had.
Many of us view the Bible wrongly. In doing so, we set ourselves up for failure right out of the gate. For instance, it’s common to see the Bible as either 1) a massive collection of rules to follow or 2) an assortment of odd and dated stories that are loosely related and meant to teach life lessons. Can you imagine anyone being motivated to read the Bible who viewed it in either of these two ways?
The truth is that, fundamentally, the Bible is neither. It’s one large story that reveals who God is, who we are, how this world we live in got here in the first place, and what the purpose of it all is. It tells us what has gone wrong and what God has put in place to set it all right. Our lives are wrapped up in this great story that is heading toward the ultimate happy ending. We are far more likely to be drawn in when we see the Bible in this truer light.
The human heart can only love so many things with so much intensity before it runs out of gas. We are repeatedly lured away to love things far more intensely than we should. Think of Scrooge and his money, Gollum and his “precious” ring, or Narcissus and his own reflection in the pond. When this happens, our hearts grow cold toward God and, by extension, towards the things God has said.
The beauty of loving God supremely is that He graciously fills our hearts back up and teaches us what things to love and how to love them. He is the only thing you can exhaust your love on and come away with more love to give. Bible reading is not an end but a means of fostering deeper love for God, which in turn stirs the appetite to read the Bible more.
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