Where do you sit when you study? On a couch? At a table? On the floor?
What tools do you have near you when trying to study?
I have a lady in my Sunday class that recently commented on my scriptures and said she'd love to be in my mind for a day. I think that's interesting. Could it mean she'd love to learn how to study, take notes and see the scriptures the way I do..? Whatever it was she was thinking and feeling, I feel the conclusion can be summed up in one thing - how present I am with the scriptures.
I have wanted to share some tips I have learned about studying and getting really present in our opportunities for learning through books and scriptures, and didn't know when or where to do that, but after this exchange, I think I could share a few of my simple "Pro Study Tips."
|a glimpse of Katie's scriptures|
For the most active and present mind experience
1. Study at a table
A table can be nurturing experience in many ways. This applies to our minds as well as our bodies and hearts as we are nourished by family meals. I've noticed, studying at a table puts our mind on “serious scholar alert” and our minds engage in the experience with more presence and commitment.
2. Study with a pencil
|a pencil and bookmark|
Having a pencil in our hand or right by us, adds another layer for our minds to engage in the searching experience. We want to find truth, right? This searching in our minds is essential to be able to come to truth and having a simple tool as a pencil to mark and underline phrases we like or which stand out to us, will help our minds engage more fully.
3. Study with a tri-folded blank paper bookmark.
When we have a pencil in our hand, it naturally makes sense to have paper close by to write on. Try taking a piece of blank computer paper and fold it in thirds as a bookmark. This not only gives us a place to take notes as we go, but it also holds our spot in the book. When I write down my notes or thoughts, I like to mark a reference of the page or chapter so I can find the place again if wanted. These notes help my mind remember what I am reading. I can also feel free to diagram the images I am reading about as those visuals come and I definitely like to diagram concepts I really want to remember. The tri-fold paper is perfect for this remembering tactic.
|Diagraming in my books|
A specific benefit to studying a book or document at a table with a pencil and paper is becoming fully present with the author and their writings. This presence of mind allows questions to flow out of us, so that we can come to receive the answers to these questions of the heart. What is the message? What is the author saying? What can I learn today? Why even spend the time picking up a book such as the most important inspired Words of God recorded by Holy Men, if we don’t have the presence of mind to be patient with the coming message?
This brings me to my last “Pro Study Tip” ~ a “Be-Attitude”,
4. Being Humble Enough to Recognize a Need to Study
Desire only comes when we recognize a need. Do you understand the scriptures? Do you want to hear the voice of God in them? Do you want your prayers answered when turning to the Word for direction? But, do you fall asleep when reading them? Do you get lost in the middle of the chapters or forget what the beginning was about? Or, do you struggle to even figure out the author's main point? (I could go on for several posts on the many Hebraic main points that are shown in the Bible, and how to decode the patterns in these ancient records - another post for another time! ;) When we can recognize that we have a need, desire to study comes more intensely. This desire is the foundation of study and the key “Be-Attitude” of becoming more present in our study.
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17, NIV
Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. Psalm 119:105
I have learned “House of Study” is the Hebrew way to describe a scholarly study. Originally, all scholarly study began within families, as they taught their children from God’s laws in Nature and the Hebrew Bible. I believe practicing by studying in the scriptures is the best way to gain scholarship and learn to study. Resources:
- Learn more about “House of Study” (click)
- Consider how a pencil and paper are "Organic" Materials. Read more in Nurturing Our Families by Katie Hansen