When I was in grade school, I was part of a team that would memorize Bible verses for a competition. I would sit on my porch, eat Lemonhead candy and practice Bible flash cards.
I hate to admit it, but I mostly read the Bible to win the competition not realizing how the Bible can change your life.
As a teenager, I continued reading and memorizing the Bible but did not fully grasp the depth, relevance and love that the Bible offered.
How the Bible can change your life? It is the living Word of God and when we read it to know Him better our love and relationship with Jesus is strengthened. The Bible is life giving and changes us.
”In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
John 1:1 NASB
The Power of the Bible
It is a difficult concept to embrace but God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit and the words of God (the Bible) are all connected. When we read the Bible, this Holy connection feels like someone is talking directly to us through the anointed words.
Have you ever felt God speaking to you through the Bible? I have.
Many times in my life I have felt lost and unable to find comfort. I opened the Bible and suddenly read a scripture that brought me clarity and peace.
The Holy Spirit speaks to us through the inspired words of the Bible. When we deny ourselves the power of the Bible we are also missing out on one way we can hear God’s voice. The Bible is like a loud speaker for God’s voice in our life.
I can’t begin to count the number of times the power of the Bible is made evident to me by an answered question, answered prayer or new revelation; that is how the Bible can change your life.
What Happens When you Read the Bible Every Day?
Many things in life are hard to totally understand until you experience them for yourself; such as marriage, parenthood, grief, and loss.
What happens when you read the Bible every day? Similar to other habits, we won’t totally understand and realize the impact on our life until we start reading the Bible every day and make it part of our daily routine.
If you think about things we do every day (what we see, hear, taste and smell), there are positive and negative life consequences. Our diet, exercise and the people who surround us are good examples of daily investments that produce either positive or negative consequences.
“People are creatures of habit, and routines offer a way to promote health and wellness through structure and organization. Having a routine can greatly improve your health. Everyone is unique. Not everyone requires a fully scheduled day to reap the health benefits of a routine, so make the choices that work for you, knowing they’ll only make you healthier and more efficient with your time.” Northwestern Medicine
Reading the Bible every day has amazing positive consequences on our heart, mind and soul!
We can experience spiritual growth even if reading the Bible comes from a heart of obligation; that is how powerful God’s word is. But when we read the Bible and pray from a heart of love and desire to know Jesus, we grow, change and become more like Christ.
“Read your Bible daily. Do not be content to skim through a chapter merely to satisfy your conscience. Hide the Word of God in your heart. It comforts, guides, corrects, encourages – all we need is there.”
“These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.”
Acts 17:11 NKJV
How the Bible can Change Your Life
I have witnessed so many examples of how the Bible can change your life. The more I invest in reading and studying the Bible the closer I grow to God and understand His story and experience Godly contentment.
Here are four major benefits I have experienced by reading the Bible: (all Bible versions NLT)
The Bible Provides Comfort
Psalm 34:18 “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed.”
Psalm 147:3 “He heals the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds.”
John 14:1 “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me.”
The Bible Provides Wisdom
When we sit down to read the Bible with the intention of learning and gaining wisdom, God shows up, and we gain a deeper understanding of who He is. Here a few scriptures that remind me of the wisdom available through Jesus in the Bible.
Proverbs 2:6 “For the Lord grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding.”
Colossians 3:16 “Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives.”
James 1:5 “If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.”
The Bible Provides Strength
After fasting, Jesus is tempted in the wilderness, and each time He is tempted He uses scripture to find strength and resist the enemy. That strength is still available to us through reading the Bible and the Holy Spirit’s guidance. When we feel like giving up, God’s words can help us persevere.
Philippians 4:13 “For I can do everything through Christ,[a] who gives me strength.”
Isaiah 41:10 “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.”
Exodus 15:2 “The Lord is my strength and my song; he has given me victory. This is my God, and I will praise him—my father’s God, and I will exalt him!”
1 Corinthians 10:13 “The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.”
The Bible Provides a Connection to Jesus
The greatest benefit of studying the Bible is a stronger connection and relationship with Jesus. The more time we spend reading the Bible the stronger our identity in Christ becomes. We are able to love and forgive others, and the closer we grow to Christ the more we desire to read His word.
Hebrews 11:6 “And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him.”
John 1:1 “In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
John 1:14 “So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.”
Turning to the Bible during times of struggle, to gain wisdom or to grow closer to God, helps us understand and experience how the Bible can change your life.
Why is the Bible Important?
The Bible has been the most influential book in my life. Why is the Bible important? It solidifies our relationship with Christ, builds trust and is the “manual” we use to develop our transformed identity.
I would say that is pretty important. But why is it so easy to read other things more than the Bible?
The biggest competitor in the race for our attention is social media.
In an excerpt from an article on Social Media’s effect on our mental health by Mclean Hospital, a Harvard Medical School affiliate, the reason we spend so much time on social media is explained:
“Social media has a reinforcing nature. Using it activates the brain’s reward center by releasing dopamine, a “feel-good chemical”…The platforms are designed to be addictive and are associated with anxiety, depression, and even physical ailments. According to the Pew Research Center, 69% of adults and 81% of teens in the U.S. use social media.
This puts a large amount of the population at an increased risk of feeling anxious, depressed, or ill over their social media use. But what makes users come back for more even when it can literally make them feel sick?
“When the outcome is unpredictable, the behavior is more likely to repeat,” Sperling says. “Think of a slot machine: if game players knew they never were going to get money by playing the game, then they never would play. The idea of a potential future reward keeps the machines in use. The same goes for social media sites.
One does not know how many likes a picture will get, who will ‘like’ the picture, and when the picture will receive likes. The unknown outcome and the possibility of a desired outcome can keep users engaged with the sites.”
I am not anti-social media, but I try to be a good steward of my time (not always successfully!) I know the positive influence the Bible has on my life, but I cannot say the same for the time I spend on social media. Having this type of research reminds me to be intentional with my time and what I am allowing myself to be exposed to.
Social media is powerful and can lead to negative results. But the power of the words of God is stronger and answers the question of why is the Bible important.
“Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” Ephesians 6:17 NLT
Reading the Bible can Change Your Life
Studying the Bible for me takes place alone, in small groups and in church. All three methods have taught me many lessons. How and where you read the Bible doesn’t matter, on how reading the Bible can change your life as long as you start somewhere.
As a child, I did not win the Bible competitions, but what I did win was of greater value. Seeds were planted and grew inside my heart for a lifetime.
Reading and studying the Bible has changed my life by drawing me closer to God, helping me hear His voice and helping me gain wisdom. Only through the grace and truth have I learned that the Bible can transform my life to shine the light of Christ on others.
I would love to hear how reading the Bible changed your life!
Mary Rooney Armand loves to write inspiring, faith based stories. She focuses on helping others grow in their intimacy with Christ and thrive in their personal relationships. Mary lives in New Orleans with her husband Cory and four children. Besides writing, she teaches Bible Studies and leads small groups. In 2020 she created ButterflyLiving and a Bible Study titled “Identity” which is available on Amazon. To learn more visit maryarmand.com.