This summer, I have a break from my normal Bible study. It’s 30 weeks long each year and amazing, really keeping me in God’s word. I will miss even these 3 short months off. Breaks away from structured studies are good, though. They teach us to seek God’s word on our own. During this break, my kids and I are implementing a simple Bible study method known as TAP (Truth, Application, Prayer). I really think this format is awesome; it can be used anyplace, anytime, no major Bible study needed. It’s really just the most simple of Bible studies, formatted to help you pull the most out of your time in the Word.
The idea is to start with 15 minutes a day. Find a quiet time and place for your study, gather your resources (Bible, pen & notebook or two), and focus. The lady who introduced me to TAP emphasized the need for that second notebook, so that when we’re distracted by various ideas and to-do’s, we can jot them down on notebook #2 and get back to business. The mind is amazing in that once we write an idea down, it’s suddenly released onto paper and out of our minds, giving us a “break” from that idea.
If this study is for kids, help them navigate though a few samples of what their study might look like on paper. We divide ours into three sections: the first is a 1-3 sentence synopsis of what we read (possible character traits of an individual, theme, etc). Next, we write down an application based on the Truth we read. Lastly, we jot down a prayer to God. If you have teeny tiny people at your house, old enough to think for themselves and write a little, you can simplify even more by combining the application and prayer step. Believe me, the written prayers of your children will blow you away!
So, even though we adore our yearly Bible study (CBS), I appreciate this method because it encourages us to be diligent students of God’s word, to find, on our own, the Truths He has for us in His word….that He’s been waiting for us to find. Remember, “The word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart” Hebrews 4:12 (esv). Be encouraged to study God’s word!
(There are a few acronyms for good ways to study God’s word: TAP, as I’ve written about here and SOAP)