Reading The Bible
So how often do I read the Bible? Honestly, this depends on what is going on in my life. When I was sixteen I read the Bible in one entire year following a program from a daily calendar. In college, I took religious studies courses about the history of Judaism and Christianity, which required me to read the Bible each day. For this class, I also read the Bible in conjunction with scholarly journals about Biblical Studies as research for paper writing. Many people were very upset with our professor because she said the Bible was written by man. Many Christian students in my classes criticized the professor, but they should not do this because the law clearly states the Bible cannot be taught from a religious perspective at public universities. There are many private colleges in Southern California that teach the Bible from a Christian perspective and I would suggest taking courses at these institutions if that is what you are looking for. My professor was brave enough to share with the class that even though she is not a Christian, she still believed that the writers of the Bible were inspired by a higher power. This professor struck me as a very fair and accepting of many different viewpoints regarding the Bible, which I felt was a great quality for a teacher and is one of the reasons her classes were my favorite in college. I enjoyed reading the Bible from a research perspective, but today I enjoy reading the Bible for my own personal inspiration.
Some Inspirational Bible Verses
Since I decided to write this hub I will share with you yes I am a Christian and this is a powerful belief in my life. However, I will not be getting into any religious debates or tell you what to believe. I do not claim to be a scientist or a Bible expert, I am merely sharing a few passages from the Bible that bring me comfort in times of need. I do not read the Bible daily, but I read it every few days and sometimes just when I feel the need for strength and counsel. I prefer individual Bible study over many church sermons that do not touch on the Bible as much as I would like.
The non-denominational church that I attend from time to time bases many of its sermons around Bible passages, which I found to be inspiring and uplifting. As a teenager I was very touched by a youth group I attended at a non-denominational church and this experience changed the way I looked at Christianity. Many Catholics, Lutherans, Baptists, and members of other denominations attended this church because of its ecumenical mindset, which states that all Christians should work together to achieve a spiritual brotherhood. I enjoyed this church because there were people from many different denominations that were able to get along and not let doctrines get in the way of fellowship and studying the Bible. Our youth group activities revolved around studying a different Bible verse weekly, which was a great thing because many of us had different viewpoints and we were encouraged to share even if someone did not agree. Our main focus was studying the Bible and to me that is what true fellowship is all about. This is a church where I felt everyone was loved and respected, which is not something I could say about every church.
Even though I am a Christian I would never tell anyone what to believe because you must decide that for yourselves. However, I feel I can attend any church and talk to any Christian because we all have the same belief in the Bible and I choose to look past doctrinal differences. I am happy to say the Bible is a place where I can find solace when I have a question and need an answer.
The Twenty-Third Psalm
The Lord is My Shepherd known as the Twenty-third Psalm is my favorite because of the beautiful imagery. One of my best friend's also loves it because her grandpa used to read this Psalm every day before he passed away. I like to think of verse 23:2:
He makes me lay down in green pastures; He leads me beside still waters.
This eidetic scene is serene and calming to think about during stressful moments of the day. I can imagine lying in a green pasture next to still water and then nothing seems very stressful anymore. I love the idea of God leading me with his symbolic staff when I am feeling down or sad. Just as many people have a favorite song or movie that cheers them up, I like to read the Twenty-Third Psalm when I am melancholy.
The Song of Solomon
Many Biblical scholars argue that the Song of Solomon is just erotic love poetry, but I believe it is much more than that. The purpose of this book to is to show mankind that sex is not the dirty thing that the Puritans of Salem would have you believe, and even behind closed doors they were hypocrites about this issue. People in love and a committed relationship such as marriage should be able to express their feelings towards each other, and the Song of Solomon shows that is something that is not dirty or shameful.
Not A Fan Of Organized Religion
Even though I like to read the Bible, I am definitely not a fan of organized religion. I can see how going to church might bring comfort and joy to some people, but my faith is more about just reading the Bible and finding inspiration on my own. I do not need organized religion to do that.