When I am feeling lost or ungrounded, I often turn to the scriptures for advice and answers. On more than one occasion, I have found a story or passage that answers my question specifically. God's word is good, and in it all people can find peace and guidance. If you'd like to learn to apply scripture to your life, follow these five steps.
A casual perusal of the scriptures will not make you familiar with them. Daily reading will help you develop a love of the scriptures and knowledge of the stories and wisdom contained in religious books. Even on busy days, I try to read for a few minutes in the morning and a few minutes at night.
Pause for impressions
While reading, take time to stop and think. Do you understand the message? What is God teaching through his word? Can you identify with the people in the stories and their struggles? I often feel impressions while I read, prompting me to think about my life and how I can solve problems and become a better person.
Add in prayer
For me, scripture study goes hand in hand with prayer. Prayer can bring you to a peaceful place where learning and growth can occur. Prayer also helps you to have courage to endure or change. Sometimes I pray before I read, sometimes during my study, and always when I am finished. Prayer connects you to God and allows his word to be part of you.
Act in faith
If you've received an impression on what you should do from your study of scripture, it's up to you to act in faith. God will always help you, but if you disregard his word and guidance it will be harder to hear his voice and follow his path. Lives of strength and faith are depicted in the scriptures. You, too, can act in faith and see how God blesses you.
Ponder the process
My problems aren't always solved with one reading of scripture. Once, I spent a few months reading and pondering how to help one of my children through a difficult time. The process of reading, praying and pondering became very important to me. This experience affirmed what I already knew; a habit of scripture reading is important.
No matter what book of scripture you choose to read, you can find applications for your life. Let God bless you and those you love as you act on teachings found in scripture.
Amy M. Peterson, a former high school English teacher, currently lives in Oregon with her husband and four children. She spends her days writing, reading, exercising and trying to get her family to eat more vegetables.