What if I told you there is one simple change you could make that would alter your life exponentially? Would you do it?
What if I told you that I, a formerly depressed woman, now experience such joy and peace in my soul that it reaches far beyond my circumstances, past the difficult people in my life, and overcomes my socio-economic level?
Would you believe me?
It is not a "magic" fix, although it is indeed a miraculous prescription! I have found that participating in this simple yet meaningful practice delivers eternal rewards and rejuvenates the woman that I am with inexpressible joy and purpose.
If you know me at all, and you understand the miracle that God has caused to happen in my life, then you know exactly what I am going to tell you to do.
Read your Bible.
Read your Bible every day with joy and delight!
Immerse yourself in its powerful principles and in its extravagant peace.
Think about the Word of God ... talk about the Bible ... make it part of your emotional DNA.
Did you know that the Bible has healing power over sin, sickness and emotional pain?
"He sent His word and healed them and delivered them from their destruction" (Psalm 107:20, MEV).
Did you know that the Bible is able to do for you what other resources are unable to accomplish in your life?
"My soul collapses on account of grief; strengthen me according to Your word" (Psalm 119:28, MEV).
The Bible is the greatest source of healing, comfort, wisdom and peace that has ever been known to humanity.
"This is my comfort in my affliction, for Your Word revives me" (Psalm 119:50, MEV).
Whatever you have gone through in life, the Word of God has the power to heal and to assuage your pain. I guarantee it!
Whatever you will face in all of your tomorrows will be bearable because of the wisdom and strength found in the Word of God. I guarantee it!
I believe that God's Word is powerful and a wise counselor. I also believe that the Bible holds the answers for God's children when applied appropriately, when treasured daily and when accompanied by a heartfelt longing for God's opinion.
If you are wondering how to approach reading the Word of God, let me give you a couple of suggestions:
1. Set aside 15 minutes a day to read your Bible. Perhaps on the weekend, you would be able to set aside 20-30 minutes a day. We spend our lives doing so many different and various activities and ignore the importance of daily time focused on God's heart and on God's will. We go to the gym, play computer games, talk on the phone, watch pointless TV shows and clean things that will just need cleaning again tomorrow. The investment of time that you give to the Word of God will be the best investment of your entire life.
2. Choose a Scripture once a month to memorize. At the end of the year, you will be the beneficiary of 12 new Scriptures that are hidden in your heart. On the first day of every month, simply write out a verse on a three-by-five card and then carry it around with you. When you are waiting in a line, read your memory verse. When you are in a doctor's office, read your memory verse. When you are on the verge of frustration, read your memory verse. By the end of the month, it will be written on your heart.
3. When you are in a difficult situation in life, get on your knees with your Bible open. Ask God to speak to you through His Word. Reverently open your Bible and bask in all that He is and all that He has. The best place to start is to study the verses that are on your daily plan for that day.
4. Make it your personal goal to share with someone once a week what you are reading in your Bible. Ask God to open doors for you to share a Scripture with someone. Perhaps you could set a monthly appointment with a friend and determine that you will only talk about the Bible.
5. Remind yourself that as the children of God, we do not primarily read the Bible for information but for transformation. Even if your mind does not understand what you have read, your spirit is being renewed, strengthened and restored. I guarantee it!
"So I will keep Your law continually, forever and ever!" (Psalm 119:44, MEV)
Carol McLeod is an author and popular speaker at women's conferences and retreats, where she teaches the Word of God with great joy and enthusiasm. Carol encourages and empowers women with passionate and practical biblical messages mixed with her own special brand of hope and humor. She has written five books, including No More Ordinary, Holy Estrogen!, The Rooms of a Woman's Heart and Defiant Joy! Her most recent book, Refined: Finding Joy in the Midst of the Fire, was released last August. Her teaching DVD The Rooms of a Woman's Heart won the Telly Award, a prestigious industry award for excellence in religious programming. You can also listen to Carol's "A Jolt of Joy" program daily on the Charisma Podcast Network. Connect with Carol or inquire about her speaking to your group at justjoyministries.com.
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