MamaKarmel.com features guest bloggers, who are engaged in mentoring with Karmel. Please enjoy and share this post from contributor, “Mama Emily”.
A few years ago, I attended a presentation about scripture study that changed my life. It might sound a little dramatic, but it’s true.
The presenter showed pictures of her study journal and talked about her methods.
As a teenager, I never missed a day of scripture reading. Sometimes I’d only read a verse or two right before closing my eyes for the night, but I never missed a day. I toted my scriptures on vacations and everything. If I was super tired, I’d ask myself, “If I was doing something fun or watching a movie and there were only 5 minutes left, would I stop and go to sleep?” My answer was always no. And how much more important is it to read God’s word in those 5 minutes than watch the end of a movie?
The morning after the presentation, my time in the scriptures was completely different. I actually spent my first several days studying the first verse in the Book of Mormon. How? I certainly wasn’t just reading the verse over and over again. The verse led me to deeper studies of birthrights, parenthood, education, and the importance of record keeping.
1 Nephi 1:1 says–I, Nephi, having been born of goodly parents, therefore I was taught somewhat in all the learning of my father; and having seen many afflictions in the course of my days, nevertheless, having been highly favored of the Lord in all my days; yea, having had a great knowledge of the goodness and the mysteries of God, therefore I make a record of my proceedings in my days.
The following words have linked footnotes in the Gospel Library app: born, goodly parents, taught, afflictions, and record. I followed each of these links, some leading to more and more, always writing down thoughts and scriptures that impressed me as I read. Sometimes I’d look up interesting talks on LDS.org or google for further understanding.
Do you see how a few words with footnotes can lead to so much depth of learning?
The other thing that has made a huge difference for me is my Gospel Study Journal. Instead of having random notes all over the house, they are organized and INDEXED in one place. Total game changer for me! I love it.
I have continued to wake up about an hour before my family (excluding a large break for baby #5), and it is amazing how quickly that time passes. Most days, I am writing furiously, trying to capture all of the bits and pieces of the things I am learning.
Of course, there are mornings when I hesitate to get out of my warm bed, but I have learned that I regret missing my personal study time more than I miss my sleep.
The presenter who taught me years ago, also taught that every day is a battle for our souls. The first words in my scripture journal say, “I will win the struggle for my soul. I will conquer the natural man and be who the Lord wants me to be.”