The Catholic faith is based upon two important pillars – Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition. If we don’t read our bibles regularly, we’re missing a very important part of our faith. Is hearing the Word of God on Sundays in Mass enough? God’s Word is food for our journey here on earth. I’ve also heard it called an instruction manual or even “a love letter from God.” Is it enough for us to eat once a week? No!
I’ve tried reading the bible cover to cover. Whew! It’s quite an undertaking. Since I’m basically lazy, and needed some motivation, I began by reading all of the short books first. I’m a person who likes lists, so I made myself a list of the bible books and checked each one off as I finished it. By reading the short books first, I experienced quick success and was able to motivate myself with plenty of check marks. Next, I went back to the beginning – Genesis – and began to read the longer books in order. I’ve gotten to 1 Kings and am kind of stalled out. I’m not a history buff. All those King changes, wars and fighting just don’t keep my attention. I wouldn’t recommend this plan. I understand that Jeff Cavins “The Great Adventure” is a wonderful bible study, though it may be costly for individual use. If your parish offers it, I’d sign up.
If you’d like to begin reading your bible regularly, I’d recommend starting off small. You may simply log on to usccb.org/nab/ or ewtn.com and click on “Today’s Mass” (readings of the day.) Before you begin reading, take a moment of silence, and say a little prayer to the Holy Spirit. Next, read the readings of the day prayerfully. Then simply spend a few moments thinking about what you just read and asking yourself the questions, “What do I think God is trying to say to me here? What line or which words particularly stand out/speak to me today?” Remember you are not trying to interpret the scripture yourself. You’re just allowing God’s Word to minister to you.
I don’t know if you know this – I found it interesting. When we hear the first and second readings in church, we are seated, because we are in an attentive posture facing the lector. We stand for the gospel, however, not because it is more important, but because we are called to act upon what we hear proclaimed. Standing is a posture of action. Soooo, before you finish your meditation, take one more look at the gospel. Is there any part of it that God is calling you to act upon – in 2011 ? Resolve to try to act upon that gospel as you go throughout your day, your week, then close with a little prayer of thanksgiving.
I found a great little article on reading the bible – especially for Catholics. If you’d like to read more, simply click Here. Hope you have a grace-filled day!