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When I was four years old, I asked Jesus into my heart. I knew I had done things that were wrong, and I felt in my little-girl core there was a holy God who wanted me to follow Him and desired to forgive my sins. As I grew, I wavered in my beliefs but settled my questions of faith by my late 20’sand knew I wanted to follow Christ for the rest of my life.
There was one problem: I never liked reading the Bible. I loved to read just about anything else, but the Bible felt dry and boring. It also inspired tremendous guilt, as it seemed like Christians all around me truly found pleasure in reading and studying the word of God.
If you are a Christ follower like me, maybe reading the Bible feels like a chore to you. Can we be authentic believers in Christ without reading the Bible?
I believe you can give your life to Christ and become a Christian without reading the Bible. You can come to an understanding of who Jesus is and what He did for you through a variety of ways beyond Bible reading. You may feel the tug on your heart when you hear a sermon or a friend’s personal story. You may meet Jesus by praying on your own. You may have an encounter with God through music or nature and feel that tug inside your soul at the sheer beauty of sound and color.
If you are a Christian and struggle to get into the Bible, let go of the guilt. Romans 8:1 tells us that if you are in Christ, there is no condemnation. He died to get rid of your guilt. So lay it at His feet and ask Jesus what you should do about it.
So if you can be a Christian and not enjoy the Bible, are you off the hook from reading it? Not exactly. Without reading the Bible, it’s like having a long-distance relationship with the one you love with no means of communication except old-school letters – and never opening the letters.
The Bible is a collection of God’s letters to us. It has tons of great life instruction and encouragement that apply to today. I have found that as I persisted in trying to read the Bible, my appetite for it has grown. Although I will never be a person who remembers to read the Word every day and who is inconsistent with regular “quiet times,” I still use the Bible as my go-to for great advice. When we read the Bible, we also see the way God works through history and get a framework for the way he works in our lives.
The Bible doesn’t have to be a dry book you pull out again and again, only to give up and put it back on the dusty shelf. Here are five ways to enjoy the Bible more.
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