Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Book Review: How To Enjoy Reading Your Bible

How To Enjoy Reading Your Bible. Keith Ferrin. 2015. Bethany House. 176 pages. [Source: Bought]

Author's stated goal: My goal is simple: to help you enjoy the Bible. That’s it. If you enjoy it, you will read it more. If you enjoy it, you will talk about it. If you enjoy it, you will be more consistent in your time with God. If you enjoy it, you will apply it. When it comes to the Bible, God never intended you to stop at believing it is true. He also wants you to enjoy it. I do too.

Premise/plot: In How To Enjoy Reading Your Bible Keith Ferrin shares with readers ten tips on how to ENJOY reading your Bible. At the end of each chapter, there is a study guide that helps to adapt it--if you will--to a group bible study format.

  • Introduction
  • Tip 1: Remember Why You Are Doing This
  • Tip 2: Set Your Expectations Really High
  • Tip 3: Have a Strategy
  • Tip 4: Watch the Whole Movie
  • Tip 5: Learn From Your Shampoo
  • Tip 6: Raise Your Voice
  • Tip 7: Read Alone
  • Tip 8: Don't Read Alone
  • Tip 9: Go on a 60 Day Adventure
  • Tip 10: Take Two Four Month Challenges
  • How These 10 Tips Have Changed Everything
  • Appendix A: A Small Group Study of Ephesians
  • Appendix B: A Chronological Reading Plan

My thoughts: I would definitely recommend this one. I feel the author and I are kindred spirits in some ways. In particular, we both love to read CHUNKS of Scripture. And by chunks I mean large quantities of the Bible in one sitting as opposed to one or two chapters per day. Also he seems to be a fan of spending a month or two in the same book of the Bible. I'll be honest I've never spent 60 days in the same book of the Bible (tip 9). But I have spent 30 days in the same book of the Bible.

I thought each tip worthy of attention. Some will be more challenging (for me) to try to implement into my own reading. But I think his tips are definitely solid and good.

I thought I would include a quote from each tip:
Oh, how our time in the Bible would change if we kept the friendship front and center. If our time in God’s Word were primarily relational instead of informational, it would have a significantly higher probability of being transformational!
You can change your expectations. You don’t have to stay where you are. The Bible can be exciting and enjoyable for you. It is possible to have David’s words be your own: The law of the Lord is perfect, refreshing the soul.
Every time you and I sit down to read our Bibles, there is someone playing defense. Someone who is actively trying to make sure we don’t enjoy it. Someone who is throwing distractions our way. And the “defense” starts early. It starts before you even pick up your Bible.
When we read more of it, we easily get into it. When we read little bits, we don’t. It is as simple as that.
The context is story, but the process is repetition. We learn in the context of story by the process of repetition.
We remember some of what we see. We remember much more of what we see and hear. Even if what we are hearing is our own voice.
Read only the Bible. No devotional. No commentary. No questions. No videos. No lesson. Yes, read alone. Simply you, God, and His Word. That’s it.
When it comes to enjoying the Bible, few habits are more beneficial than having regular conversations with someone—or a small group of people—who is studying the same book of the Bible as you.
What would you say if I told you that sixty days from now you could understand and love a book of the Bible more than any you have studied before? Now, what if I told you that you would actually have huge chunks of it down word-for-word without even trying? That would be pretty cool, right? Well, you can.
Challenge One: The Bible Read Thru There are only three simple parameters: 1. Read the whole Bible in four months. 2. Read with a pen in your hand. 3. Talk about it. If you want to get the most out of your Bible Read Thru, this third parameter is not optional. You will be tempted to make it optional. It will seem easier to keep it between you and God. You will convince yourself that you don’t need the accountability to stick with it.

© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible

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