Turning reading the scriptures into studying the scriptures can be a tricky thing to master. It wasn’t until I was on my mission that I had grasp on what it actually meant to study the scriptures, and ever since then I have gotten so much more out of my study time!
Here are some of my top study tips to get the most out of your study time!
1. Start off right! Pick a time and place where you won’t be distracted. Michelle Craig, the First Counselor in the Young Women General Presidency, spoke at the October 2019 General Conference about being intentional about creating time and space to hear God’s voice. She recommend, “Pick a time and place, and listen for God’s voice every day. And keep this sacred appointment with exactness, for so very much depends on it!” Don’t forget to start with a prayer, and seek the Spirit.
2. Study for a specific purpose! On your mission, you will study for specific people you are teaching, and lessons you have that day. Studying about a topic, or a question you have are also great ways to study. Elder Bednar reads the Book of Mormon by topic. Each time he reads the Book of Mormon, he picks a new topic! Some ideas for topics might include, the Restoration, The Atonement, The Savior, people changing, prayer, or The Gospel of Jesus Christ (faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end.)
3. Keep a study journal. Record your inspiration and what you learn as you read! This is a great way to write down notes and ideas. It’s also the perfect place to write down any revelations or promptings you receive. My study journals are some of my most prized possessions. It’s amazing to have a record of the spiritual things you’ve learned, and the things that the Spirit testified to you.
4. Use the tools provided for you in the Latter-day Saint edition of the scriptures: Topical Guide, Bible Dictionary, maps, footnotes, Index, and Pronouncing Guide. These are great tools that you can use in all your studies!
5. Mark things that stand out to you. Mark your scriptures with pencil or something that won’t show through on the other side. Writing with something erasable is a good idea too. Color coding your markings is also a great way to record your thoughts and promptings. You could use one color for references to the Savior; select another color for scriptures on repentance, etc.
Don’t forget that developing studying habits takes time! The best thing to remember is that the best study tool for studying the scriptures, is the Spirit.
P.S. Check out these awesome resources to learn more about getting the most out of your scripture study!