Grunt

Prayer and Scripture study

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I realize this question may result in answers that don't work for everyone, but I feel compelled to post.  Possibly because making shortcomings public is a form of accountability.  I'm horrible at prayer and staying in the scripture.  I need to make it a priority to pray productively daily, read the scripture, and live the Word of Wisdom.  I don't know why I feel the urgency to do this, but I suppose it doesn't matter.  

How do you keep yourself on track?  Because it isn't a habit, I don't even think about it until it's half-way through the day.  Do you physically read the scripture daily?  Do you use an ipad or listen online?  Does that count?  It seemed fine to me the first time through, but now it doesn't seem like quite enough.  

I should start a struggling investigator support group.  If the moderators would like me to keep my rantings in my missionaries thread, please move this or just ask me to repost there.  I just stuck it here because it seemed like a side focus, not my main journey.  Although, now that I'm ready to hit submit, I may be wrong.

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@Grunt

i read the Book of Mormon during breakfast. Pray in gratitude for the Book. Take a walk and pray in gratitude. Drive to work. Pray in gratitude while walking to office. Brief prayer when waiting foe computer to warm up. Pray when tired st work rather than coffee break! Pray when get home. Read D&C before bed and pray after reading this. Right now getting through general conference so read this instead of Book of Mormon in am.

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There are aspects in the scriptures that highlight my life and why I choose to do what I do. The first scripture is 1 Nephi 10: 17, 19, and 1 Nephi 8 (whole chapter). If you have further questions why I can answer why I suggest these scriptures.

One item to note is that we are all on different levels of study, and at times different forms of study will increase the knowledge we have and satisfy our spirits more than others. When we first start reading the scriptures we should focus on reading the story (IMHO). This means people can either read the the physical scripture book, they can read online versions (Apps), or they can listen to the scriptures online. In the beginning this will satisfy the soul.

As we progress, our spirit may desire further understanding, so we delve into the scriptures a little more. Recently, Mrs. Anddenex one night said to me, "Anddenex, my study has now turned to a focus of really understanding not just the story but the doctrinal applications." She now has a notebook next to her. She asks herself questions. She highlights thoughts she has and writes them down. At some point, I can totally see her going back to reading the story again.

The real question, "What have you felt to do?" I would invite you to do what you are feeling (If not every day, although that is ideal, don't give up. If you are reading every other day that is still good and the Spirit of the Lord can still bless you) because you are probably being extended by the Spirit.

My personal study has varied. I used to study around 2 hours a day. Life got busy, 2 hours wasn't a priority anymore, and now my study is much less.

 

 

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47 minutes ago, Grunt said:

How do you keep yourself on track?  Because it isn't a habit, I don't even think about it until it's half-way through the day. .

Honestly a lot of this is you do what works best for you.  For me until I have a habit built up I have my phone remind/hassle me.

47 minutes ago, Grunt said:

Do you physically read the scripture daily?  Do you use an ipad or listen online?  Does that count?  It seemed fine to me the first time through, but now it doesn't seem like quite enough.  

Use whatever form/frequency works for you.  I read on the online version, a little (couple verses) daily, and gorge on Sundays.  Listening works great for a lot of people.

47 minutes ago, Grunt said:

I should start a struggling investigator support group.  If the moderators would like me to keep my rantings in my missionaries thread, please move this or just ask me to repost there.  I just stuck it here because it seemed like a side focus, not my main journey.  Although, now that I'm ready to hit submit, I may be wrong.

LOL.  Grunt, you're awesome.  

 

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9 minutes ago, Grunt said:

I should start a struggling investigator support group.

Can members join?

(PS: I think this is a perfect place for your post, and I like that you separated it out.)

I'm going to provide simple, technical information about my scripture study, and some personal hang-ups I have "overcome".  I think my main idea is one already expressed above - find what works for you, give yourself permission to mix it up if needed.

NOTE: I always use the Gospel Library app for reading (and listening) - except for item 5c - for that, I use the website.  I haven't used paper scriptures since I discovered the power of the GL app (though the most recent version of the app almost makes me want to go back to paper, but that's another story).

1) When I was a Gospel Doctrine teacher, most of my personal study revolved around the week's lesson.  This was pretty intense study, aided by manuals (not just the GD manual).  (I still include the SS and RS lessons in my personal study as I find I get more from them if I study before the lesson.)

2) When I was released from that calling, I think the duration and quality of my study decreased, until I accepted a challenge from our Stake President to study for at least X minutes / day.  Accepting that challenge has significantly strengthened my testimony of following the counsel of one's priesthood leaders, regardless of whether the counsel seems important in and of itself.

3) For a long time, I felt that I had to do all my studying at once, and in the morning.  I found that if I didn't do this at the start of my day:

a) I would put it off after work because I was tired and wanted to relax first (then relaxing would take until bedtime or I would just forget until bedtime or something would come up, blah blah blah)

b) And, the quality of my scripture "study" barely qualified as "reading", and the duration would be "not long".

4) In the past couple of years, my timing, location, and process have changed quite a bit.  I think that's lesson 1 - allow yourself to change your approach.  My theory here is that what works will change as you and your circumstances change, or it may take some trial and error to find the best approach for you.  What works for others may or may not work for you.

5) My most recent changes are:

a) I listen to one chapter of the Book of Mormon first thing in the morning while I tread on the trudgemill (I follow along with the text).  Auditory learning is my weakest learning method (to a pitiful extreme - human speech tends to go in one ear and get lost in an auditory black hole).  My hope is that maybe this will help me improve auditory retention.  We'll see (very recent change).

b) I still insist on doing some of my scripture study in the morning, but I also am now doing a portion after my post-work relaxation.  What I'm finding is that as long as I do some of it in the morning, I will also do some in the evening.  But if I do none in the morning, see item 3 above.

c) My morning and evening routines are totally unrelated.  The morning routine is 1 chapter of the Book of Mormon and all-to-part of the next Sunday's SS or RS lesson.  This is more casual than my evening study.  My current evening study is President Nelson's challenge to study what the scriptures say about Christ.  I'm trying out a theory with this study, which involves writing out the verses in question - as in, I have a notebook, read the verses in question, and then copy them into the notebook.  (This is also an extremely recent change - we'll see how it goes.)  This is my strongest learning method (not that that's why I'm doing it, but it does seem a benefit).

6) I was really enjoying reading the Old Testament with a new perspective, but had too many other things I needed to study, so I put that aside until next year, when the SS lessons will be from the OT.

7) I have learned the most when I sit down to study a specific topic in detail, and take notes as I do (and then revise the notes, and revise them again, etc. until I feel they are sufficiently organized).  When I do this, I tend to lose track of the time I spend, and find myself the most interested and engaged.

8) Depending on various details, I find studying a topic can be difficult if I don't know the "story" behind the verses I'm reading (especially in the OT and sometimes in the Book of Mormon).  So I find it's helpful at times to just read for the story, to refresh my memory - or at least to find something that summarizes the story so that it's not confusing or distracting me from what I'm trying to study.

In case anyone's curious, here's info about President Nelson's challenge:

1) Report regarding the challenge

2) Devotional wherein the challenge was issued

3) Conference talk mentioning the challenge

4) Website my brother made with links to facilitate one's study

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58 minutes ago, zil said:

Can members join?

(PS: I think this is a perfect place for your post, and I like that you separated it out.)

I'm going to provide simple, technical information about my scripture study, and some personal hang-ups I have "overcome".  I think my main idea is one already expressed above - find what works for you, give yourself permission to mix it up if needed.

NOTE: I always use the Gospel Library app for reading (and listening) - except for item 5c - for that, I use the website.  I haven't used paper scriptures since I discovered the power of the GL app (though the most recent version of the app almost makes me want to go back to paper, but that's another story).

1) When I was a Gospel Doctrine teacher, most of my personal study revolved around the week's lesson.  This was pretty intense study, aided by manuals (not just the GD manual).  (I still include the SS and RS lessons in my personal study as I find I get more from them if I study before the lesson.)

2) When I was released from that calling, I think the duration and quality of my study decreased, until I accepted a challenge from our Stake President to study for at least X minutes / day.  Accepting that challenge has significantly strengthened my testimony of following the counsel of one's priesthood leaders, regardless of whether the counsel seems important in and of itself.

3) For a long time, I felt that I had to do all my studying at once, and in the morning.  I found that if I didn't do this at the start of my day:

a) I would put it off after work because I was tired and wanted to relax first (then relaxing would take until bedtime or I would just forget until bedtime or something would come up, blah blah blah)

b) And, the quality of my scripture "study" barely qualified as "reading", and the duration would be "not long".

4) In the past couple of years, my timing, location, and process have changed quite a bit.  I think that's lesson 1 - allow yourself to change your approach.  My theory here is that what works will change as you and your circumstances change, or it may take some trial and error to find the best approach for you.  What works for others may or may not work for you.

5) My most recent changes are:

a) I listen to one chapter of the Book of Mormon first thing in the morning while I tread on the trudgemill (I follow along with the text).  Auditory learning is my weakest learning method (to a pitiful extreme - human speech tends to go in one ear and get lost in an auditory black hole).  My hope is that maybe this will help me improve auditory retention.  We'll see (very recent change).

b) I still insist on doing some of my scripture study in the morning, but I also am now doing a portion after my post-work relaxation.  What I'm finding is that as long as I do some of it in the morning, I will also do some in the evening.  But if I do none in the morning, see item 3 above.

c) My morning and evening routines are totally unrelated.  The morning routine is 1 chapter of the Book of Mormon and all-to-part of the next Sunday's SS or RS lesson.  This is more casual than my evening study.  My current evening study is President Nelson's challenge to study what the scriptures say about Christ.  I'm trying out a theory with this study, which involves writing out the verses in question - as in, I have a notebook, read the verses in question, and then copy them into the notebook.  (This is also an extremely recent change - we'll see how it goes.)  This is my strongest learning method (not that that's why I'm doing it, but it does seem a benefit).

6) I was really enjoying reading the Old Testament with a new perspective, but had too many other things I needed to study, so I put that aside until next year, when the SS lessons will be from the OT.

7) I have learned the most when I sit down to study a specific topic in detail, and take notes as I do (and then revise the notes, and revise them again, etc. until I feel they are sufficiently organized).  When I do this, I tend to lose track of the time I spend, and find myself the most interested and engaged.

8) Depending on various details, I find studying a topic can be difficult if I don't know the "story" behind the verses I'm reading (especially in the OT and sometimes in the Book of Mormon).  So I find it's helpful at times to just read for the story, to refresh my memory - or at least to find something that summarizes the story so that it's not confusing or distracting me from what I'm trying to study.

In case anyone's curious, here's info about President Nelson's challenge:

1) Report regarding the challenge

2) Devotional wherein the challenge was issued

3) Conference talk mentioning the challenge

4) Website my brother made with links to facilitate one's study

Thank you!  I'd buy Scriptures to write in but I spent all my money on fountain pens.  The LDS Library it is!  Maybe I SHOULD use my alarm to remind me until I get into the habit.

That website your brother made is a wealth of knowledge.  Thank you for sharing.

Edited by Grunt

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1 hour ago, Grunt said:

That website your brother made is a wealth of knowledge.  Thank you for sharing.

It's just a re-organization of the Topical Guide entries.  He scraped them and the links off the website (or maybe extracted them from the Gospel Library database, I forget).  Once they were in his own database, we experimented with various ways of organizing the entries and creating the links, and settled on that page being the best.  His private server has other ways of organizing the output, but I've forgotten the details now, as I prefer that page.  The link on the left was my idea - it pulls up the chapter with all the referenced verses in the chapter highlighted.  Links on the right are just to the specified verses.  I tend to open a chapter and skim the un-highlighted stuff (to remind me of context), and focus on the highlighted verses.

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I'm with you, Grunt. I have a hard time making prayer and scripture study into a daily habit. I go through 2-3 wks of being diligent and then dropping off (like I do with a diet!). Thanks for starting this topic as I can use the suggestions too.

 

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1 minute ago, beefche said:

I'm with you, Grunt. I have a hard time making prayer and scripture study into a daily habit. I go through 2-3 wks of being diligent and then dropping off (like I do with a diet!). Thanks for starting this topic as I can use the suggestions too.

That's why I do the morning - it was the only time of day I could guarantee no one would disturb me / preempt the use of that time (since everyone else is still asleep).  This let me set the habit.  Now that the habit is set, splitting the time in half, as long as half is first thing, also seems to work.

For others, evenings may be a more "secure" time - the point is to find a time when you can ensure it won't get preempted by someone or something else. :)

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Tonight I set my alarm for 5 minutes after I get up to remind me to pray.  I've changed my running and gym playlist to the Book of Mormon podcast.  That will be a shock, I'm sure.  I don't know how long that will last, though.

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8 hours ago, The Folk Prophet said:

I did not feel comfortable with only listening and so make it a priority to read/study 15 min first thing in the morning. Then I do the first 15 min of my commute listening. 

Reading in the morning is difficult for me but I agree that listening seems to be less impactful for me.  

I listened this morning during the beginning of my commute and I think I’ll go back and read it tonight.  

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This kind of thing is always hard until it becomes a habit. I tend to say my morning prayer when I'm walking my dog. I'm a little clearer headed than when I first wake up, and it makes my prayers more meaningful. I also find it helpful to say my evening prayer before I let myself climb into bed. I read my scriptures in the morning so I don't forget to do them later. Making it a habit requires having a specific time set into your schedule that works for you. Something easy to remember like every day right after dinner or right when you get home from work. 

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