I didn’t always love reading my scriptures. I remember thinking they were really boring. But over the years as I have yearned for direction, strength or comfort, I’ve learned of the treasure that lies in their pages. I have grown to love the peaceful feeling that comes over me as I read them. I have learned so much for the stories and the incredible heroes that are in them. I have especially found value in making application between their situations and mine. I have come to better understand the principles that the stories teach and love trying to use those principles to improve and add positive character traits to myself.
I have particularly loved coming to understand that just spending time in them opens my mind and heart up to spiritual things. It’s like it opens a conduit between heaven and myself. It makes it easier for the Lord to communicate with me throughout the day with inspiration and revelation for my life.
I have also found that they are great at helping me recenter my heart on the commandments. They remind me what is expected of me and draw my heart closer to God, deepening my desire to obey His law and follow His guidance. They help me become aware of myself, my strengths and weaknesses, and areas in my life that need some attention.
The scriptures were prepared for us, to give us guidance and direction. They are small and simple things that can easily be taken for granted. They help us see the path that God would have us take. I have learned that when I neglect them, my journey more easily goes off course and I tend to bring hardships on myself as I wander. I know my life has an abundance of peace and happiness when I use God’s word to direct my path.
Different Ways to Study God’s Word
Though I do enjoy reading them straight through to glean meaning from the stories, there are many different ways to study the scriptures that can at times be more beneficial.
- Topical Study: I have found so much insight when I have been struggling with a certain thing, or when preparing a lesson or talk, to go to my scriptures and study by topic. This study increases knowledge and understanding of those topics in a way not other study can.
- Themed Study: When I have read cover to cover but with the extra challenge of highlighting everything that has to do with a different theme, these studies have drawn my mind to areas and truths that I haven’t even noticed before.
- Memorization: I did this a lot when my kids were little and I couldn’t seen to find enough time for a deep dive study. I would pick a scripture for the week and work on memorizing it. I would also pick one to work on with the kids. I really noticed a special spirit accompanying this time of study.
- With a Study Journal: Perhaps the study I learned the most about the gospel from is when I studied looking for principles we believe and took the time to write what I found and my own thoughts of those things after I wrote them down. It was a more active reading that required my mind to be fully engaged. I received such great insight as I wrote down the things I was learning. My testimony grew so much as I studied in that way.
- Conference Talks: Looking for a conference talk that goes with my daily reading has enhanced my study so much! I really credit this type of study for helping me better understand the gospel and the words of the scriptures, especially some passages that felt so confusing for a time.
- Challenges with a Friend: I am a huge fan of challenges and giving myself a deadline to work through a specific section of scripture. This becomes even more fun when I do it with a friend or group of friends and we can talk about what we are learning with each other.
- Gospel Library App: When I lost the vision in my right eye it became very hard to ready my paper scriptures for a time. I was so grateful for the option of a digital study using the Gospel Library app. I was able to change the size of the letters and change the background so I could see the words with less strain. I soon learned that the app contains incredible tools to enhance study and make cross referencing easier so my study could become deeper and more meaningful. I love the option of listening to talks and hearing them in the speakers’ own voices (and being able to speed them up a little). I love being able to add notes and quotes to the scriptures I’m reading. I love being able to tag verses with my own unique tags so I can easily find those verses again later. I love that I can create collections of verses that have special meaning me. And love having a place for notes where I can record experiences where I have seen the Lord’s hand in my life as well as priesthood blessings I have been given.
How have the scriptures been a light in your life? What are some of the meaningful ways you have studied?
The Primary Manual for Come Follow Me is perfect for families with young children!
Click below for FREE DOWNLOADABLE coloring pages from Rising Moon Adventures that I created to go with the above lesson and Psalms:
Primary Insights for Come Follow Me videos –
Song 1: Thy Word by Amy Grant
Song 2: Word of God by Vertical Worship