I will never forget the day that I became determined to become more of a Bible-reader.
I was discussing a certain passage of Scripture with a protestant friend on the train home from university, and he unzipped his bag and pulled out a Bible.
I was so impressed that someone valued the Word of God that much that they carried it around with them at all times. I immediately resolved that I was going to become a woman who truly valued the Bible, and I promptly bought my own small Bible that I could carry around with me.
If you’re a reader like me, chances are at least some of the books you read are in order to grow – whether it be in regards to your own human formation or spiritually. But regardless, I’m sure we’ve all had the experience of picking up a book, with the hopeful anticipation that it will help us change or grow in a certain area where you’ve been struggling. We dive in and are so on fire, filled with excitement and motivation while we’re reading. Yet, we finish the book, full of good intentions… only to swiftly end up back in old habits.
This is especially true of reading the Word of God. We probably have some guilt and shame on top of our struggles. We know that the Word of God is living and active. It has the power to deeply transform us (if we let it), but sometimes we’re just not quite sure how that is supposed to happen. It seems overwhelming and hard to understand. There’s so much packed within each passage that we know to be true, but we often have a hard time really believing it.
But I believe there are four main ways that our thoughts prevent us from getting more out reading Scripture:
The thoughts that prevent us from picking the Bible up in the first place,
The thoughts that prevent us from being fully present to our reading,
The thoughts that prevent us from receiving the Truth in what we are reading deep in our soul, and
The thoughts that prevent us from reflecting on what we have read, and taking action on it.
Today I’m going to give you some tips on how you can leverage the Metanoia Cetholic Journal exercises to uncover and challenge these thoughts!
To find the thoughts that prevent you from picking up the Bible iin the first place, I would simply make the topic for your Thought Recon “Why I don’t read the Bible as much as I would like to.”
To find the thoughts that might otherwise prevent you from being fully present to your reading of Scripture, consider doing a general Thought Download in Exercise 4, or perhaps an Emotion Eecon, to clear out any worries that might clutter your mind from being fully present to and receptive to His Word. Complete Exercises 1-6, before reading whatever your reading is for that day and dialogue with the Lord about it in Exercise 7.
To find the thoughts that prevent you from receiving the Truth in what you are reading deep in your soul, complete Exercises 1-3. Then complete your Thought Recon, and include all the thoughts you had about what you just read, especially anything that you know is true (because it’s Scripture!), but doesn’t feel true.
Use Exercise 5 to explore one of those thoughts that you know is true, but you don’t fully believe. I love rating how much I believe a statement is true and then asking myself “Why is this a 4/10 and not a 1? And why is this a 4/10 and not a 10?”
To find the thoughts that prevent you reflecting on what you have read, do a Thought Recon on “Why do I not treasure Scripture in my heart?”
To find the thoughts that prevent you from taking action on it, take a resolution that you have made recently, as a result of reading Scripture. That is your Exercise 4 topic. Write all the reasons you have not kept it.
BONUS: Use Exercise 3 to contemplate who you would be, what you would be thinking and feeling, as the version of you who is most present to the Word and receptive to it, and who, like Our Lady, stores it up in their heart.
If you try any of these out, I’d love to hear about it! Email me at email@example.com or tag me on Instagram @catholicintrovertcoach.
If you’d like to explore this further and take concrete action toward having a more fruitful spiritual reading life, I would love to connect!
About the Author
About the Author
My name is Monica Elias and I’m on a mission to help fellow introverted Catholic women to embrace their unique gifts and set the world ablaze by coming to a deeper understanding of how God made them. I help my clients to experience more peace, connection, confidence and clarity in their daily lives through mindset coaching. My background skills from Mathematics, Theology, and Education have had new life breathed into them through my coach training with Metanoia Catholic. My favorite things to talk about are goals, personal development, temperament, blue flames, holiness and one’s unique call to sanctity, and books. I live in Australia with my husband and 3 children.
The best place to find me is on Instagram @catholicintrovertcoach