Have you ever felt like this? You know you should read your Bible, you plan to read your Bible, but you find that you don’t want to read your Bible?
We need to ask God to give us the desire to study His Word. When God answers this prayer (and He will, because this prayer is clearly consistent with His will for our lives), it won’t mean that we will no longer be distracted or busy with children and household duties. We won’t be delivered from the temptation to be lazy or undisciplined. We will still have to submit our natural will to the discipline of actually opening the Word and spending time in it.
But God can and will implant in our hearts a desire to be in His Word. He will help us recognize and remember our need. He may even put us in difficult situations that drive home the fact that we cannot function without Him and the sustaining, life-changing power of His Word.
I remember going through a particularly trying time with one of our babies when he was tiny. Nursing was not going well, he was crying all the time, and losing weight instead of gaining. When we finally discovered the source of the problem, the attempted solution (combined with caring for his older brother) consumed all my time and energy. Our house was a disaster, I was an emotional and physical wreck, and I hardly had any time to even sleep. Because we were not completely committed to a church family at the time, I had very little support or counsel from others. I felt completely helpless, and it seemed like no one understood what I was going through.
I look back now on that season and clearly see it as the cattle prod God used to drive me back into the corral of His Word. Years earlier, I had delighted in reading and studying the Bible. But in the first years of our marriage, I had become distracted. Outside of Sunday worship times, I spent very little time reading or thinking about God’s Word.
When I came to the end of my own resources (puny as they were), I finally woke up to the fact that I couldn’t do this on my own (duh), and I turned to God and His Word. I remember crying my way through some of the psalms. They became heartfelt prayers and spoke deeply to my soul. God’s Word brought a peace to my heart that stirred in me a thirst for more, and drew me back again and again for the strength and comfort I needed.
That is when my desire for God’s Word was revived. (I smile, too, as I note how God used a little guy who was desperately longing for the life-giving milk he needed, to bring me back to desiring “the sincere milk of the Word”.) We never know how God may choose to implant that desire for His Word in our hearts.
If you know you need to spend more time in the Word, ask Him to awaken a desire in your heart. He will. Pray. Then hold on and trust Him! The riches of His Word, and the long-reaching effects of feasting on it day after day are worth whatever circumstances He brings into our lives, if they draw us to His feet, ready to listen.