Christie DuPree

Christie DuPree

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Steady Perseverance

“No one expects to attain to the height of learning, or arts, or power, or wealth, or military glory, without vigorous resolution, strenuous diligence, and steady perseverance. Yet we expect to be Christians without labour, study, or inquiry.” -William Wilberforce

I found this quote on the Deeply Rooted instagram account the other day, and it just really stuck with me. Over the last couple of years I've realized how for most of my life I've known so little about the book that is supposed to be our foundation as followers of Christ. I've grown up and been saturated in it my entire life, and spent time reading the word and dwelling on certain scriptures, but the truth is that so much of the Bible I just straight up didn't understand. And because of that, I spent a good many years literally sighing at the thought of having to pick up the bible and read it. I knew it held such truth and freedom and life giving words, but I could never actually unearth it because I wasn't fully, intentionally applying myself to understanding it. 

I was cracking it open out of obligation and even then would mostly just read Psalms and the gospels, because it was the easiest to understand outside of context. And because the rest of the bible just felt weighty and confusing and almost daunting. It honestly overwhelmed me to the point that I subconsciously let years slip by without making a habit of regularly reading God's word. The entire Old Testament confused me to no end and the thought of trying to decipher and piece all the names and stories and events together just seemed impossible. But last year sometime I was just like, okay. I've got to just read this stuff. Even if I don't understand it, I've got to just dig in because I know it's so important.

And if you're at all like me and felt like the bible was just an overwhelming feat that you'd never conquer, just know that you're not alone, and that actually it's NOT as overwhelmingly impossible to understand as it seems. I stumbled across some books on amazon that have been helping me to understand better and I wanted to share them with you, along with some other books I'm studying.

First is this tiny, simple little book that literally lays out each and every single book of the bible and gives a brief synopsis on what each book is about. Studying this tiny little guide has helped me SO MUCH when I'm reading the bible and helps to give an overview of what's happening so that you're not totally lost amidst all the crazy hard to pronounce names of people and places and what not.
It's like 2-3 bucks on amazon. Totally worth it.


I know it's absolutely silly and hilarious, but this book! Like, say what you want, but it's been cool to approach the bible from just a completely deconstructed and simple kind of way. It's been helpful to get a better understanding of God's word so that I can dig deeper and not feel like I'm just lost in ancient stories. 


And I've also been going through a bible study with some friends of mine, following this book 
and it's been completely life changing. Each chapter/study I've had to underline almost every paragraph because it's such practical, helpful information and wisdom in growing your walk with the Lord from every aspect. I highly highly recommend buying it and going through it with some friends, or even just on your own.


And this next book deserves it's own blog post, it's own entire blog dedicated to it, a symphony, a standing ovation, you name it. I can't even express to you how incredible this book is. I've had to read the beginning 3 chapters several times over just to let them sink in before moving on. It's about our calling as followers of Christ to be holy in all we do, and how as humans we tend to categorize sin into different sections from semi-acceptable to acceptable but the truth is that God sees all sin equally and hates it all. It talks about how we have a holy standing before God thanks to Jesus' work on the cross, but we also have an obligation to live out holiness in our lives and in all that we do. It's insanely challenging and inspiring.
 SO GOOD.
I just recently bought the study guide to go with it, both can be found on amazon here 



And I always keep a journal nearby, to write down prayers, thoughts, etc.


I'm only just brushing the surface but It's such an important thing and I really feel like I'm not the only one who has struggled with this, so I wanted to share with you all and hope to encourage you to dig into God's word and watch how it transforms your life. Being diligent and disciplined enough to take time out of our busy lives to spend reading the bible is difficult, I know. But nothing compares or adds up to the value of intimately knowing our creator and familiarizing ourselves with his word. 
So I just want to encourage you to start. Start anywhere, but the beginning is always a good place.


Love,
Christie


3 comments:

  1. Thank you thank you for sharing your heart! I hear my own heart in your words. I was in a hard place last year but Jesus pulled me out and my walk is so stronger now. Reading and being invested in his word definitely did it! Your voice always resonates with me. Thanks for sharing! I'm going to get some of these books for sure!

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  2. Thanks for sharing a piece of your light and spirituality. It's kind of a scary and vulnerable thing to do, and something most people (including myself) don't do enough. I feel inspired to study the Old Testament a little better after reading this. As a member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (what most people call "Mormons"), we have a couple extra books of scripture, including the Book of Mormon, along with the Bible that testify of Christ and His divine mission. But with so many scriptures to study, it DOES make it very easy to glaze over the Old Testament - it being the longest and most confusing of them all! Thanks for showing that it doesn't have to be so daunting. If I could offer my own recommendation of one of my favorite religious reads (though not bible-specific), it would have to be "The God Who Weeps" by Terryl and Fiona Givens. It's just beautifully written, and has helped me better comprehend the nature of God, especially his relationship to us, His children. It's at least worth looking into.

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  3. What Does The Bible Really Teach? Is a book you would love!! It's free and you can download it on your IPad or request a paper copy for free if you like. JW.ORG is where you download it :) hope you like it!!

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