"So Phillip ran to him and heard him reading the prophet Isaiah and asked, 'Do you understand what you are reading?' And he said, 'How can I, unless someone guides me?'" Acts 8:30
Pastors have a wide range of responsibilities within the church, but chief among them, according to the Word of God, is "to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ," (Ephesians 4:12). In order for me to do this for you, it is extremely important for me to be in the Word of God. Because of this, it is likely that I spend more time in the Bible than most people and not nearly as much as others. Actually, I feel like I never spend enough time in God's Word. But, I do feel like I know why the prophet said the Lord's Word was as honey to him.
I also know that opening the Word of God and reading it produces questions. So here are 3 simple steps to help you when getting into the Scriptures.
1) Pray before you open the Bible. Pray while the Bible is open. And, pray when you're done reading the Bible. The whole time asking God for understanding. He knows the content better than anyone, He wrote it, and He gives understanding.
2) Get a notebook or a journal or something to write in! Write down your questions. Write down what spoke to you. Write down what challenged you. Write down what was confusing. Write, write, write!
3) Take your notebook and find someone you can sit down with and work through the questions that you have. A spouse, a friend, a parent, whatever, but don't just sit and be confused or have unanswered questions about God's Word.
Like the Ethiopian in the verses above, there are times when we are all in need of someone to guide us in what we are reading. In my call from God to equip you for the work of ministry, He has given me to serve as a guide for you. If you have questions and don't know where to turn, please contact me and we'll turn to the Holy Spirit to guide us both!
Grace & Peace,
(You can reach Pastor John at firstname.lastname@example.org)