A Note from Mary Margaret West:This is the last of a three-part series from Rebecca Bradford. I’m glad she was willing to take the time to make something so important and foundational accessible to you through the blog. If you stay rooted in God’s Word, girls in your life will notice and it will make a difference, whether you know it or not. As you spend time in the Word, you’re living out of what you’re reading and experiencing. When your foundation is solid, nothing can shake it. I hope that this series has been a help and encouragement to you!
Make it Personal
We find time in our day for all the things we want. I love drinking Dr. Pepper and do not miss an opportunity to get one. Sometimes I will drive out of my way to get one from my favorite restaurant (Chick-fil-A Dr. Pepper is by far the best!). I also wash my face in the morning and at night. I don’t even think about finding time for it anymore; I just do it.
We are people of habit, who can choose to find time and resources for whatever we think is important. Where does Bible reading fall on our list of priorities? Do we believe reading scripture is important enough to reorganize our time and day? Here are some reflections I have had over my years in ministry and what I would challenge you to do differently.
Read God’s Word in your personal space, away from work and ministry distractions. I would often put off my Bible reading until l was in my office. I believed that it was quiet there and easier to focus away from the distractions at home. Inevitably my time would be cut short with interruptions. People don’t want to take away from your personal time in the Word, but they see you in your work space and assume you have time to address their concerns. I would challenge you to start your day earlier in order to put time in the Word first. It might mean saying no to extra sleep or scrolling social media while you lay in bed. It also means saying yes to something that gives life. When you mix solitary time with God into your work environments, the noise of needy projects and people always win.
Read God’s Word for your personal growth. Your Creator uniquely equipped you to reveal truth in an exciting and relevant way for the next generation of young women. He also never intended for everything you read to immediately be given away for their spiritual growth. God speaks personal words to you because he knows and cares about YOU. He thinks your heart, mind and soul are worth dying for and gave it all so you could grow up in Him. The life-giving truth you read is first of all for your personal maturity. Are you savoring the intimate words God speaks to you as you read and meditate? The Holy Spirit knows the hidden areas of our heart that need addressing and wants us to lean in. Stop busying yourself with building the spiritual depth of your ministry and build into your own foundation. The strength of your influence will flow from the strength of your maturity in Christ. Start with yourself!
Read God’s Word in the midst of your personal life season. It is good to receive insight and direction from the community of believers as others are sharing their observations of changing seasons. There are more than enough voices pushing us towards the latest trend, triumph or spiritual debate. What is God doing in your season of life right now? Are you single, engaged or newly married? Are you planning for a family, pregnant or the mother of three? Are you volunteering, part-time or working all the hours? God has specific plans and purposes for whatever season you find yourself walking in now. You were meant to thrive in this…today…the right now. It may be difficult, unexpected, amazing or mundane. Do you believe God is at work in all of those moments? Meet with him, through his Word, to soak in the wisdom and washing for this specific time in your life.
Share with us in the comments!
What is your strategy for reading the Bible?
Is consistency hard for you? Why?
What personal area of life are you neglecting because you’re too busy doing ministry?
Rebecca Bradford is a mom of three who happily just sent her youngest off to kindergarten and skipped all the way home. She served for over 20 years in SAGE Ministries and as the Director of Girls Ministry at Lake Pointe Church for 15 years. Currently, Rebecca is called Queen of her own home, and teaches and volunteers in Girlz 4 God, Gather Moms, and discipling 4th grade girls. She loves encouraging girls and moms with transparent truth that helps them understand God’s grace and feel connected with others experiencing similar struggles. Her easy going spirit makes her a joy to be around and she is never short of laughs. She’s been married to her college sweetheart for 18 years and loves doing ministry together in their hometown of Rockwall, Texas.