I’ve always wanted to be completely honest with you, so here I am, admitting that I haven’t read my Bible in a few weeks. I feel so distant from it, that I couldn’t even come up with a good blog topic for this week. Yes, I have been busy. Yes, I have been traveling. But isn’t that even more of a reason to be in the Word? Instead of telling you all about what I have found in my Bible this week, I wanted to name each and every excuse we could give (and I have… believe me) for not reading our Bible and how to actively counteract it. Sometimes we are the only people to hold ourselves accountable and because of that, we have to try even harder to keep ourselves from slipping away.
I’m far too busy.
I like to push myself into a horrible cycle of way too busy and then way too lazy. I consider the laziness period “recouping” from the busyness. My laziness is usually spent watching The Great British Bake-Off, hanging out with my family or Jon, or reading. But what do I choose to read…? Not my Bible. When I’m busy I say “I don’t have enough time to read my Bible, I’m far too sleepy” and when I’m lazy I say, “I’m far too sleepy to read.” I know I am not the only one who falls into the vicious cycle of busyness that is really just pure and utter laziness. When you find yourself saying, “I’m too busy to…” it’s time to change something. We simply cannot afford to be too busy for the one thing that should be the most important thing: our relationship with God.
I just haven’t been home very much.
As I have spent the last week traveling and I am going on two different weekend trips this month, I relate. When you travel or work long hours, it is really easy to fall out of the natural flow of things and you quickly find yourself very out of sorts. The entire time I was in The Netherlands, I didn’t touch my Bible once. It didn’t even cross my mind to open up my Bible app and read the daily verse! It would have been so easy and simple to open it up first thing in the morning or on one of my commutes and read something small. Don’t use the same excuse I did!! Take your Bible app with you and just give God 1-2 minutes during your busy travel and work schedule.
My homework is overwhelming…
Y’all. Been there. Still there. Being in college and having 5,000 assignments can honestly feel like the most overwhelming, stress, and anxiety-inducing thing to ever occur. The sheer amount of due dates thrown our way can make us feel like we just need to curl up and disappear forever. The amount of reading, writing, and active thinking we do on a daily basis is enough to make us never want to touch a book again. But reading, especially the Bible, is crucial to our mental health and helping us to move forward. All it takes is 10 minutes.
I never get time to myself.
I am not a mom. I will not pretend to understand what it feels like when you are pooping and all you can hear is your 2-year-old pounding on the door, screaming for you. Mothers are a whole other breed of human and deserve all of the accolades and awards. I have also heard time and time again that mothers sacrifice every little part of their self in order to maintain a household. I have often heard mothers of adult (or near adult) children filled with regret at the fact that they never gave themselves space as new moms. I am just going to ask one simple question: would you expect the pastor of your church to be able to make good decisions and preach and live without excellence without ever reading their Bible? Momma, you deserve to have a relationship with God too. Jesus wants a relationship with you, not just your children.
I just feel too guilty.
We are all sinners. Future us has plenty to look back on and think, “now why the heck would you do that?” We are all guilty of something. However, Jesus died for us to be free of that guilt and shame. None of us come to the alter spotless. The Bible was written for you, sinner or not. God wrote this beautiful book so that you would understand that you are not alone and that even the greatest fell short. Nothing that you have done, was not written about thousands of years ago. You are forgiven. You are free. God still wants a relationship with you, no matter what you have done.
I don’t want to hear that I am wrong.
Let’s be real. We’ve all felt this way. We have all been involved in some kind of toxic behavior that we knew was toxic, but we didn’t care. We’ve had that relationship, or those friends, or that habit. We knew it was wrong and we didn’t want to be reminded of it. In that time we stray from God because we know we are wrong and that He is right. It’s really easy for me to say, “hey, you shouldn’t do that.” But… hey, you shouldn’t do that. When you are in the right state of mind, write down words of encouragement or Bible verses to counter that behavior and put them everywhere. Your desk at work, your planner, a sticky note on your laptop or your mirror. Frame them on your wall. When you don’t want to read it, you will have no choice. Don’t run away from someone who just wants the absolute best for you. Invite Him in, He knows what He’s talking about and He knows you better than anyone else.
Phew. All of that was a message to all of us. To me, to you, to your best friend, your aunt, your uncle… all of us. We all make excuses that lead us to slowly slip away from the Word and from God. It just takes a few minutes and holding some accountability for yourself. We are all far from perfect and we could all use a whole lot more Jesus.