– by Joyce Meyer
God loves new beginnings and fresh starts—and He has good things in store for our lives! I hope you’re as excited as I am to find out exactly what He has planned and that starting today you’ll make it your number one goal to get closer to Him than you’ve ever been before.
Did you know that prayer and studying the Bible are two of the best ways to develop a close, personal relationship with God? I have been talking with God and studying the Bible for more than 40 years and it has radically transformed my life! God has changed my perspectives and attitudes, and healed and restored my soul through the power of His Word.
Even now, I’m amazed by all of the benefits we have through our relationship with Jesus and the truths we can discover in His Word.
It’s an Amazing, Life–Changing Journey!
When I began my journey with God, my life was a mess. I’d grown up in an abusive home. I was angry, insecure and emotionally unstable, and I didn’t have any idea how to access the peace and joy that God’s Word says we can have.
So, it’s no surprise to me that countless believers today are struggling with similar problems. Discouragement, hopelessness, fear, insecurity, and many other self-defeating attitudes keep believers from the amazing life God has for them.
The good news is, there is hope for anyone who will trust God and follow His lead! He gives us everything we need through a personal relationship with Jesus and His Word.
When you give your heart to Christ, the Holy Spirit comes to live in you (see John 14:16-17). John 16:7 (AMP) says He is our… Helper (Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor—Counselor, Strengthener, Standby). And John 16:13 says, When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth…
These two verses show us that we are never alone. God has given us the Holy Spirit to be our Helper and to guide us in our understanding of His Word.
So if you feel intimidated by the word study and think you just can’t understand the Bible, I want you to know you can! The Holy Spirit will help you if you will ask Him to do so.
Follow God’s Road Map
The Bible—God’s Word—is our instruction manual, or our road map, for life. It contains wisdom, encouragement, comfort, and life-changing power. And if there isn’t a specific answer to a particular situation or problem, you’ll find life principles that lead you to it.
- Romans 12:2 says, …Be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Meditating (rolling it over and over in your mind continually) on Scripture renews your mind to know God’s ways and prove what is good and acceptable in His sight.
- 2 Corinthians 1:3 reveals that God is… the Father of mercies and God of all comfort. When you’re grieving or hurting, God promises to be with you and comfort you.
- Philippians 4:6–7 encourages us, saying, Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with Thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. We don’t have to be weighed down by anxiety, worry or fearful thoughts.
- When you don’t know what decision to make, Proverbs 3:5–6 says to Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Be assured God will give you direction in every area of your life.
Bible study is so valuable! And there are many more benefits we can experience than the ones listed here. We just have to take the time to learn them and apply them to our lives.
Being consistent with Bible study and prayer is critical for making progress in your relationship with God. If you struggle with motivation or discipline in this area (as many people do), I want to encourage you to look into the study plans we have, like the 3030 Challenge, that can help you make this a daily habit.
God loves you so much And He has great things in store for you. Make a determined decision to draw closer to Him every day and enjoy the journey!