When our children were small, they enjoyed the “Choose Your Own Adventure” books. If my memory serves me correctly, these books had various plot lines to choose from. The decisions the reader made at each point directed the outcome of the story. It was quite fun and exciting! Isn’t this so much like real life? We are faced with decisions every day with our choices influencing our future. We need wisdom each day to choose the very best.
It is good to know that there are choices we can make, adventures we can follow, that give us a sure outcome. As summer 2018 begins, I challenge you to “Choose Your Own Bible Adventure”! As Christians, we would probably all profess a love of God’s Word, but somehow life’s distractions keep us from giving Him our full attention. This summer I invite you to join the Adventure Team, to come on a treasure hunt. Are you ready?
Choosing a Bible version that you enjoy, begin reading the Bible at the very beginning. I am reading a couple of different books presently, and I started each of them at the beginning. How else can I understand what the author is communicating? The Bible is a book with one story line from beginning to end. As you begin this exciting adventure, ask God to help you understand His story in a new and exciting way. Keep a journal of the highlights of your journey, noting all that God teaches you along the way.
By reading and understanding God’s story, you will also grow in your understanding of His character and His work in this world: past, present and in the future. You will begin to be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may understand God’s will and not be conformed to this world (Romans 12:2).
Consider studying one book of the Bible for the entire summer. Choose a book that you are unfamiliar with. Perhaps you might study a prophet or a book rich in history such as Deuteronomy. First, read the entire book to get the big picture. Then simply study verse by verse. The key to this adventure is to read and re-read the text that you are studying. Be sure to read with a purpose by asking questions: Who? What? Where? When? Why? And How?
Keep an adventure journal to record the new things that you learn about God and His purposes. Also note what He is showing you for your own life.
Our Father’s loving provision for His children is to be nourished by His all-sufficient word, “like newborn babes, long for the pure milk of the word, that by it you may grow in respect to salvation” (1 Peter 2:2). Just like little babies, Christians need a steady diet of milk in order to grow and thrive. However, Hebrews 5:12-14 cautions against a perpetual all-milk diet! This adventure will move you on to the meat of the word as you labor diligently to understand what God’s Word says and means. As you do, you will become equipped to teach others.
Memorize a favorite chapter of the Bible! This is not as difficult as it sounds. You might invite a friend to join you on this adventure. Years ago, as young moms, my friend and I memorized the book of Philippians as we walked together in the early mornings. While we walked, we simply quoted the verses we were learning and reviewed the previous verses. Or perhaps make this a family mealtime activity. In the past, we memorized many passages together with our children including the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew chapters 5, 6, and 7. Our breakfast routine was to learn one verse each morning, leaving weekends for review. We had such a lot of fun doing this together! It is really not so hard, just one verse at a time!
Psalm 1 is such a beautiful picture of a person who memories Scripture. The one who delights in God’s Word and meditates on it day and night is compared to a well-established tree with roots growing deep into the streams of water. He is the one who bears fruit and prospers in all He does. We get the picture of strength, stability, and productivity. This Psalm is a good one to memorize with young children!
I pray that you will choose a Bible adventure this summer! Be like Mary in Luke 10, sitting at the feet of Jesus, listening to His Word and gazing into His face. You will never be the same.