The encounter with God in the Bible is life-changing. To really get to know God through His Word, however, you have to read the Bible for yourself. This book shows you how to do this in very practical steps. This Bible-reading plan leads you through the entire Bible in one year. It is designed in such a way that you can start reading your Bible at any time. In order not to forget precious thoughts that come to your mind while reading the Bible, you can jot them down every day. Looking back to see what thoughts of Scripture accompanied you throughout the year is a fascinating and encouraging experience.
Every encounter with God through prayer and Bible study plays an important role in your life. Therefore, you will find many practical suggestions for your personal prayers. Every day there is space to write down thoughts that come to your mind while praying. The book also deals with some challenging aspects of prayer: What happens when my prayers are not fulfilled the way I was hoping for? What does it mean to pray and to fast? How do I get rid of bitter feelings and grudges? How can I meaningfully praise God and develop an attitude of gratitude?
What distinguishes this Bible-prayer journal from others is the deliberate focus on God and His Word as the foundation of our relationship with Him.
The helpful suggestions you will find in this book are intended to be spiritual impulses rather than rigid prescriptions. They will enrich your spiritual life with God and are meant to be suggestions that inspire you to try out new things in your relationship with God.
A connection with the living God of the Bible shapes and transforms your life like nothing else. Let this book be an encouraging companion as you journey to the kingdom.
The book's many features include:
- Bible reading program taking the reader through the Bible in one year.
- Space for journaling while reading through the Bible.
- A method for praying for family, friends and needs.
- Each month features helps on a different aspect of achieving a deeper relationship with God—prayer, Bible study, Bible marking, etc.
Longing for God – A Prayer and Bible Journal, Frank M Hasel (2017)
I travel extensively for work, so often my bedside reading is found in my Kindle. However, Longing for God is very definitely a pen and paper product as it is designed to be written in! I try to travel lightly, preferably with hand luggage only. So initially I was a little doubtful about bringing it with me, as it is not the smallest or lightest book! However, having made a weekend trip without it, I realised that I missed the blessing of reading and writing. Now it has travelled literally round the world with me - to New Zealand and back. I never leave home without it.
Although Longing for God is a Bible journal, the author shows has a realistic understanding of the busy lives we all lead. He states,
“If you skipped your Bible reading for a day (or two or three…) start reading again. It is always possible to start reading the Bible.”
The book is a combination of practical prayer tips and suggestions, a Bible reading guide and a prayer/Bible journal. Normally I dislike writing or marking books, but this book is made to be written in and used. Everything about it is designed to encourage the user to write and structure their thoughts about the daily Bible readings, as well as providing space to write daily praise, thanks and prayer requests. If you are not used to journaling, it is perfect as there is limited space for each day. If, like me you like to write, you may need to write between the lines!
It is also an eminently practical book. Frank Hasel uses his skill as teacher and pastor to share lessons learned from his own life experience. The introduction gives the basic tools for productive Bible study. Each month a new tool is added that is designed to improve and enrich your prayer life; making it easy to incorporate it into your everyday rhythms. As each tool is something which he has tried and adapted, he encourages the reader to do the same. There are also sections where you can write praise and thanks. Doing this before coming to prayer requests helped me to shift the requests from my perspective and instead helped me to see my needs and wants from God’s perspective, which at times is very different! As I look back I am reminded of answers, which are often quickly forgotten.
Reading and understanding the Bible requires persistence. Some things are not easily understood and other things only become clear the more you read.
Audrey Andersson lives in St Albans, England, where she works as is the Executive Secretary of the Trans European Division. She loves gardening and growing plants and people, as well as reading, writing and travel.
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