Oftentimes, one quiet time is not enough in a day. You will need several times throughout the day and oftentimes each session in God’s word will have to look different than the last one. Rarely can you do an in-depth study of Scripture 20 times a day. Instead, you can vary the modes of Scripture intake so that you can stay engaged with God’s word whether you are at work, at home, at the store or wherever you find yourself.
How can a believer consistently internalize the word of God on a day to day basis? How does one cultivate a balanced bible diet? Most mature Christians I meet have two fundamental realities they face each day:
- They want to spend time with the Lord in His Word to grow in godliness
- Each day’s schedule is incredibly busy and packed with activities and tasks that have to get done
What is the best way to daily put yourself before the word of God in the midst of all the normal, everyday things that need to get done?
I have asked myself this in every stage of life so far and with my family newly expanding, I find myself thinking through this issue again.
I have already written about the book “The Practice of Godliness” by Jerry Bridges. As I have been working through the book, it continues to prove itself an excellent read. I want to analyze a quote I recently read which helps answer some of the questions posed above. Bridges gives 5 staples of a balanced bible diet to work into your day.
What the Quote Means
This quote appears in a chapter which discusses training yourself for godliness. Bridges rightly argues that one of the primary means by which a believer becomes more godly is through diligent and disciplined exposure to the word of God. Bridges then cites the Navigators five different methods of Scripture intake: hearing, reading, studying, memorizing, and meditating.
These five different categories of Scripture intake are incredibly helpful to keep in your mind. Hearing has to do with listening to the exposition of the Word of God from your Pastor or a teacher. Bridges describes “reading” as a structured Bible reading plan you go through in a year. The basic idea is getting a broad look at Scripture. Studying has to do with going deep into a text using analytical tools and then organizing your information afterwards.
The last two, memorizing and meditating, are closely related. Memorizing is internalizing Scripture to the point you can recall it easily to your mind. Meditating means “murmuring to yourself” the words of Scripture so you are constantly mulling a text over in your mind. Personally, I think meditating is the highest form of Scripture intake and all the other four support the goal of meditating on the Word of God “day and night.”
Why it is Important
There is an old adage that goes “variety is the spice of life.” Similarly, I would say “variety keeps you engaged with Scripture.”