The instructions of the Lord are perfect, reviving the soul. The decrees of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple. The commandments of the Lord are right, bringing joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are clear, giving insight for living. Reverence for the Lord is pure, lasting forever. The laws of the Lord are true; each one is fair. They are more desirable than gold, even the finest gold. They are sweeter than honey, even honey dripping from the comb. They are a warning to your servant, a great reward for those who obey them.
Psalm 19:7-11 (NLT)
On Sunday nights, a small group of us are reading Eat This Book by Eugene Peterson and working through the Church at Brook Hills' secret church series "How to Study the Bible." I can't give enough kudos to both, even though they have some unexpected hurdles as you're running through.
Peterson's book is THICK. Not in the way you could use to flatten a flower or prop open a door, but like 3 feet of fresh snow with one step in and you're asking "Where's my leg?" He writes in a way that forces me to hollaback to the last paragraph, sentence, and word every few minutes even to know what I'm reading. However, the beautiful road that's paved from page to page is certainly worth the workout.
As for "How to Study the Bible," David Platt lays out an instruction manual for the ultimate instruction manual. It's also thick, but easily digestible. The hurdle I'm actually tripping over is my own realization that time's been-a-wasted. The way I've often pored over the Word in the past is similar to a horoscope - trying to find the immediate relevancy for my life and writing down lucky numbers. But Platt outlines a much more thorough approach which will take time and notepads and hardy pens. But the reaping? Maturity, increased effectiveness, and pulling back the curtain on a God whom I really love and I know loves me.