Consider a Bible for Your Devotions – Part 1

The purpose of these two articles is to serve a dual purpose – first is to challenge you to have a second Bible that you use only for your devotional time.  Second, in the  next article, I thought I would just give an informal evaluation of the Bible I have been using for my devotions this last year.

Let me begin my stating that there are many folks who will prefer to use the same Bible for church and devotional times, and that is fine if it works for you.  What I found though, in my life, is that if I do not read actively in my devotional time then my mind will wander.  Reading actively for me means marking freely in the Bible I am using.  I could be reading a most engaging part of God’s Word and within seconds look out the window beside me and think about the sticks in the yard that need picked up.  So one of the ways I have chosen to combat this tendency to distraction is to be on the offense with my Bible reading.  That means that, along with my Bible, I am equipped with two things – a cup of coffee and a good highlighting pen.

The reason I suggest a second Bible instead of the one you carry to church is because highlighting in a standard Bible will bleed through the pages.  Most people realize this and so are hesitant about highlighting in their Bible.  Here is what I am recommending you do then – purchase a Bible that you will not hesitate to use a highlighter with and mark in generously.  What I need in this time is to attack my Bible reading.  Reading the Bible casually like the newspaper yields little, if any, fruit in my life.  For years I used a New American Standard One Year Bible for my devotional times.  There are highlights all through that Bible.  I ask God before I read to open my eyes so that I may behold wonderful things from His law (Ps. 119:18).  Throughout my reading I want to have an ongoing conversation with God about what I am reading.  God promises that He will “order my steps” in His Word (Ps. 119:133).

When something I am reading is of interest to me or touches on my heart, I will highlight that.  Some places have lots of highlighting and other places there are only a few spots marked.  What I have highlighted is like looking back on a journey to see how God has “ordered my steps” in His Word (Ps. 37:23).  When I use this method I find that I also can return throughout the day to these passages and allow the Spirit of God to continue to work that truth into my heart.

Along with the highlighting I will make notes in the margin, especially when there was some date that I want to remember alongside something God is teaching me.  This Bible is very precious to me as I can remember God’s goodness to me in showing me more of Himself through my time with Him.  This Bible also serves for me as a reminder that I serve a living God and He wants to interact with me on a daily basis.

The next article will serve to give some thoughts about my current devotional Bible and further encourage you to give thought to having a Bible you can mark in without hesitation.

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