I try really hard not to say, “You should . . .,” because it seldom goes over well.
Whether I’m talking to my husband, my adult children, or my friends, the words, “You should . . .” usually invite heated discussion rather than speedy compliance. Even as a writer, basic blogging courses teach, Never make your reader feel as though you’re preaching at them. As I’ve matured, I’ve learned to use the subtleties of communication to change an imperative into an option. “Perhaps you’d like to consider . . .” or “Have you thought of . . .”
But today, I’m breaking all the rules. Because it’s important. Because I’m passionate about it. Because your spiritual life depends on it. Here goes:
You should read your Bible every day.
And here’s why—surprising things happen when we read our Bibles. Here are five of them:
1. We have more peace. In this frantic, stress-filled world in which we live, who wouldn’t like more peace? Peace, in its truest form, isn’t the absence of strife; it’s the gentle resting of a child in the arms of her father. “Great peace have they who love your law, and nothing can make them stumble,” Psalm 119:165 tells us. When we read God’s Word, he reminds us he is in control, and we are safe.
2. We live a purer life. Think of the ills that plague our society: murder, rage, adultery, gossip, promiscuity, abortion, alcoholism, drug abuse, robbery . . . I could go on forever. Applying God’s Word to our lives protects us from these. “How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to your word,” says Psalm 119: 9.
3. We experience God’s provision. “No good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless,” Psalm 84:11 says. This is a conditional promise—if we live blamelessly (not perfect, but diligently trying to obey God), God will meet our needs. And we cannot live blamelessly without spending time in God’s Word.
4. We experience deeper and more satisfying relationships. How many times, when we’re struggling to be a good spouse, parent, family member, or friend have we said, “I just wish there was a book I could read”? Well, there is—the Bible. The best relational advice in the world is sitting quietly on the pages of Scripture just waiting for us to read and apply it.
5. We talk with the God of the universe. When we pray, we talk to God. When we read God’s Word, he talks to us. Think about how excited you’d be if you could talk to the wisest man in the world. Now multiply that wisdom by a gazillion, and you get a glimpse of what happens when we spend time in God’s Word. In addition to wise counsel, God’s Word speaks love, tenderness, encouragement, hope, and perspective.
I hope by now you understand why I broke my rule and told you, “You should read your Bible.” And I also hope, as you’ve read five of the surprising things that happen when we spend time in God’s Word every day, you’re intrigued and challenged to read your Bible every day. Of all the disciplines of the spiritual life, daily Bible reading is the one that will impact your life in the most amazing ways.
My short list is incomplete. I’d love to hear about the benefits you’ve discovered as you’ve read your Bible. Leave a comment below and share your thoughts. If you're reading by email, CLICK HERE to leave a comment.
And if you'd like to hear a lovely musical rendition of Psalm 84, I invite you to worship with Jason Silver.