My Bible study life changed when my dear friend and mentor Lisa shared with me the tools she uses to study the Word. Collecting Bible study methods, she writes them each on a card and then uses them to guide her study time.

(Actually she prints them with these cute graphics. Lisa makes everything pretty. But this girl? Ain’t nobody got time for that! I’m glad she shared.)

Bible study methods tools notecards

Easy to keep tucked in a Bible, these little cards have been an invaluable help to me in teaching me different ways to examine Scripture, and I love how they have trained me in study skills and taught me fresh ways to unearth truth.

If you’re a beginner student, I suggest putting together some Bible study cards like these. Grab some notecards and a pen (or you creative types can have all the graphic or crafty fun you want), ask for suggestions from trusted students of God’s Word, and by all means, use google to find what you can. I’ll share a few of my favorites later in our 31 Days series.

I don’t use the cards every day, but I did for a long time, and I still like to revisit them periodically to ensure I’m being stretched to think about Scripture in ways that are different than my natural bent.

A couple of tips for your journey in studying God’s Word:

1. Don’t rush.

2. Mix it up.

We’ll look at the first one today and continue with the second in tomorrow’s post.

Don’t Rush.

I think we get overwhelmed sometimes by the amount of time it takes to tackle a book of the Bible, and that “in over our heads” experience makes us feel bad about not “getting it” sooner than we do. Don’t enforce imaginary time clocks on your study progress; none exist. My favorite way to study passages of the Bible is in small chunks. I’m not talking about pulling out individual verses here or there to look at. No, it’s important to look at bigger-picture contexts before diving into examination of the small details (more to come in a couple of days on understanding context).

I’m saying after paying attention to the context, I move through a text, usually a single book of the Bible, extremely S-L-O-W-L-Y. I like to sit in the passages I’m studying for a long time, looking at it from as many different angles as possible so I can best understand its meaning (this is where using different Bible study cards on different days helps), and then allow my heart to marinate in its truth so that I truly know God better and allow him to change me. For that to happen and for me to move through each of those stages, I’ve found I need more time and repetition in the same passage.

For example, the spring before last I spent three months studying Habakkuk. It was slow study, as most days were spent looking at just one verse. That spring was a precious time of study as the Lord worked sweet healing into my heart during a season of grieving. But because of opportunities to lead others through Habakkuk, I then hung out in it for six more months, revisiting its truths, digging deeper, and continuing to learn. Some might say spending nine months studying a three-chapter book of the Bible isn’t very productive! But I can’t think of a part of God’s Word that has more deeply ministered to me and transformed me than that one! Slow works for me. And I think we need to learn to be ok with that. Each time I revisited that book, I learned more and the text became new to me over and over. Allow yourself time for that kind of experience. Aim for smaller texts, and be ok with moving slowly through them.

 Bible study grace 31 days

 Is there a specific method or tool that helps you study God’s Word? Please share with us what works for you!