Have you ever gotten bored of doing the same thing over and over?
Most of us have. And if we are honest, we’ve experienced boredom in our spiritual walk as well. It’s like anything else in our lives. Take work for example: If you do the same thing every day with little or no change or opportunity to grow, you will get bored.
The same thing happens to us when our bible study and prayer times with God become stagnant, stale, and repetitive. We feel like it’s just a chore, something you have to check off before the day ends as opposed to diving into it with eagerness and enthusiasm.
Here are a few signs of boredom that you might experience in your spiritual life:
- You don’t apply God’s word to your life
- You are not learning much from the Bible
- You are unable to share what you are learning when people ask
- Every time you pray or read, you can’t wait to finish so you can go on with your day
Granted, most of us, if not all encounter lulls in our spiritual journey. However, it only becomes a problem when these signs are patterns in your life as opposed to isolated episodes. There have been many times where I’ve felt uninspired and reluctant to study the Word or even pray to God; nonetheless, I’ve learned from these moments and discovered new ways to keep my relationship with Him exciting and meaningful.
If boredom is something you experience often in your Bible study, see below some ideas that may help bolster your faith and get excited about the Bible again.
Study out a Character in the Bible
If you haven’t done so, this type of study will give you an accurate picture of God’s people. For example, I grew up hearing great things about David, the shepherd boy who defeated the Philistine giant Goliath, but that’s all I knew. Although an inspiring story, this was all I knew about David, that he was a mighty man of God with hardly any flaws. But as I studied out his life, I learned that David was far from perfect. He was human. He had flaws. More specifically, he was a murderer, an adulterer, and a liar; nevertheless, he was also a man after God’s own heart. And despite his shortcomings, God still used him in powerful ways, in ways that still inspire people thousands of years later.
Study out a Specific Biblical Topic
Choose a topic to study out. It could be anything, but preferably something that you want to grown in. Whether it’s faith, love, perseverance or compassion, a topical study can help you narrow your focus on a subject that is relevant to your life at the moment. With a plan and a focus, you lessen the chances of boredom creeping in to your spiritual life.
Read a Spiritual Book along with your Bible
Read. Read as many books as you can. Books provide you with wisdom from men and women of faith who’ve had the experience, training, and education in whatever topic you are exploring. I’ve read books about various topics, topics such as faith, courage, discipline, and the most recent one, marriage.
As a newly married man, I know nothing about being a husband. Never have I been married and never have I lived with a woman, except for my mother. All that said, I am grateful for all the books written about marriage, books that I can turn to for insight from seasoned christians who’ve experienced the peaks and valleys of a Godly marriage.
Use Commentaries, Concordances, and Lexicons
Find a commentary, concordance or language lexicon. Nowadays, these are easily available. We have Google, a luxury unavailable to Christians of the past. You can find commentaries or concordance with a simple Google search; even more convenient, you can also find them in your friendly neighbourhood App store.
These tools provide you with historical, cultural, and linguistic context that can help you understand the scriptures better. People often misrepresent the bible because they take scripture out of context; however, you can take advantage of the tools available to you and actively examine scripture to avoid faulty doctrine.
Choose a Specific book in the Bible to Study
Choose a book in the bible and study it out; notice I said “study” and not “read.” There is a difference. Although reading the bible is better than not reading, you need to examine it and apply it to your life if you want to grow in your faith and convictions.
Consider the following tips to help you get more out of a specific book:
- Find out when the book was written
- Understand why the book was written
- Find out the author and the original audience
- Research the cultural and historical context of the book
Illustrate what you are Learning
Get creative with your Bible study by adding illustrations to your notes. If you are a visual learner, this is gold. It can help you retain Information while keeping you focused and relaxed as you sketch.
Sometimes I sketch out a scene from the passage I’m reading, even if it’s only stick people; this helps me to remember the story without having to skim through my notes, especially when my writing looks like chicken scratch. Fun fact: some of the brightest minds of the past including Galileo and Da Vinci used illustrations, diagrams, and maps to express their thoughts and ideas.