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How do I fit it in ~ Part 2

July 6, 2010

It really helps to know your goal in spending time digging into God’s Word, so we don’t set ourselves up for failure by thinking we can do it all every time.  Yesterday we looked at making God’s Word physically more easily accessible in our lives.  Today let’s think about the Amount we tackle and the value of Accountability.

Efficient Amount ~

Mothers are careful not to overfill a sippy cup or put too much on a highchair tray.  If we try to manage too much spiritually while facing limitations physically, mentally, and emotionally, the portion size may determine if we end up in defeat or delight.  A wise woman chooses a reasonable size study to tackle, will consider intensity she can manage, and will select topics pertinent to life at hand.  Taking on too much for our life stage causes us to give in to temptation to bail out prematurely or leaves us feeling like spiritual growth is out of our reach.  With wisdom to choose an amount of study we can manage efficiently in our full days (and nights), we are more likely to be consistent, apply truth to life, reach our goals, and experience longer term spiritual health.  Better to give a small child what they can pick up and eat, rather than overload them with what is too much to handle and have them toss it to the floor or choke on it.

  • Focus on plans with short prison epistles or narrative portions of scriptures.
  • Use a word study.
  • Make use of a plan through Psalms and Proverbs.
  • It’s more important to be in the Word regularly and have the truth in you than to conquer a monumental portion of scripture or heavy theological topic … and give up.  If you have young kids around, you might pull out your copy of “The Tortoise and the Hare” to illustrate this principle 😉
  • If you study topically, choose what you will use and apply immediately, so truth is reinforced in your heart right away … before nursery rhymes or late night feedings or conference calls steal it away!

Encouraging Accountability ~

As a mother of young children is drawn to the park or story time or mother’s day out or MOPS group, we need encouragement and partnership in matters of the heart.

  • Other women offer insight from their study, and they need to hear what God shows you.
  • Older women offer perspective as they look back at the season you’re in.
  • It’s easy to let our circumstances become bigger than they are when we aren’t exposed to lives of others.
  • Fellowship of other women is essential to refreshment for our souls when we’re tired and discouraged.
  • Feelings of isolation fade when we meet over God’s truth and in prayer with sisters in Christ, pouring out our dependence on Him together.
  • God has given us all we need for life and godliness, even in young mother years, so don’t ignore feeding your spirit.
  • You’re going to need encouragement and wisdom and correction from God’s Word daily, so don’t fall into the trap of thinking you can go without it.

We can be deceived by others who tell us there isn’t time or energy to deepen our walk with God during years of young motherhood.  When we’re mindful of our own weakness, it’s prime time to go to His Word with a hungry heart, humble attitude, and eager spirit.  What better time to experience the nearness of our Father than when we have young, new lives entrusted to our care?  As we draw near to Him, He promises He’ll draw near to us.  “He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young,” Isaiah 40:11. Even now, especially now, take His hand as you go to His Word and pour out your heart to Him, letting Him lead you and keep you close to His heart.  Every season is a great time to make time to dig!

Resources for daily devotions online:

Proverbs 31 –

Scripture Union –

Sharon Jaynes – (weekly)

13 Comments leave one →
  1. July 6, 2010 5:38 am

    One of the classic methods of being accountable in learning is to find a study partner and set the time and content to review.
    Just the process of verbalizing your thoughts and emotional connection to scripture and text is exhilarating , and can help you gain insights you would not have had by learning yourself and keeping it inside.

    • Julie Sanders permalink
      July 6, 2010 9:30 am

      I think you are so right here, Morris. It helps to agree to be “study partners” so that you both know the purpose of your time together and one goal of your partnership. Choosing a time to meet and focusing on the content makes the time produce the fruit it’s meant to, instead of wandering off track and letting the precious time get away from us. Very true that there is great worth in “verbalizing your thoughts.” Partnership seems to be one of the ways we “work the Word” into the soil of our hearts and lives.

      Julie Sanders

  2. Kristi Stephens permalink*
    July 6, 2010 8:09 pm

    Thank you so much for these posts, Julie. I know I have struggled with consistency during this season of little ones, and so many friends have voiced their struggles to me! Really appreciate your perspective and encouragement. I know at times I tend to take on too much and then bail out, as you stated! Being in women’s Bible studies during this season of life has been such a gift – perspective, encouragement, accountability, older mentors, and adults to talk to! 🙂

    • Julie Sanders permalink
      July 6, 2010 8:20 pm

      Yes … adults to talk to and grown up vocab. 😉 Each season has its treasures, and God’s Word can go with us as it’s woven into every one in unique ways.

      Julie Sanders

  3. Christina permalink
    July 6, 2010 9:32 pm

    Just an accountability suggestion that has worked very well for me in the last 6 months as a mom of pre-schoolers:

    Myself and 2 other friends have agreed to send a short e-mail to one another each day whenever we finish our devotions – just a few short sentences – For example: “Mon Devos – yes, Col 3 – reminded once again how much Thankfulness needs to mark my life”. Nothing profound here, but I love the daily interaction. I want to continue the running conversation with my friends, and so I’m more likely to not hit the snooze button or take those few minutes at naptime, to spend time in the Word – so that I can encourage them with what I’ve learned or be encouraged by what they’ve learned, by being a part of the dialog.

    Thank you for the great reminder yesterday and today that flexibility is the key. That instead of feeling defeated by life’s interruptions, I should put the Word more available to wherever the pauses may come in my day. Thanks again!

    • July 6, 2010 11:03 pm

      Love this, Christina! Is this a “Good Morning Girls” group? I’ll be sharing more about that great ministry on Thursday.

      • Alexis permalink
        July 7, 2010 9:10 am

        My friends and I have started a “Good Morning Girls” group…..we have all enjoyed it for the accountability and for seeing each others insight into Scripture.

      • Julie Sanders permalink
        July 7, 2010 10:20 am

        That’s awesome Alexis! A group of girlfriends to study, pray, and learn with can be that support and motivation that we need to stay on course.

        Julie Sanders

    • Julie Sanders permalink
      July 7, 2010 10:24 am

      So happy to hear it Christina. When you say “running conversation” it makes me think of how we WILL talk to our dear friends about something … but being intentional to weave what we learn from the Word into our conversation makes our friendships deeper and more productive, and that impacts our relationship with our Lord. Sounds like you and your gal pals have set a wonderful pattern of talking truth and helping each other stay on track. “Run on!” 🙂

      Julie Sanders

  4. July 22, 2010 12:10 am

    Thanks for all the practical suggestions in part 1. I have a sweet toddler so I can totally relate to it being hard sometimes to find time to spend alone with God and His Word. One of the things I have recently started doing is in the mornings after we have breakfast, my toddler gets her books and climbs up in the recliner to read. I’ll read books with her and then I read the Bible while she looks at her books. It’s been working well so far. Because I’m a study gal, I try to utilize nap time for my Bible study time. Then if I’m not too tired at night, I try to get in a small amount of Scripture reading before I head to bed. Sometimes I may read another section in my daily chronological Bible (breaks the Bible down in daily readings to read through the Bible in a year) or I may go over a memory verse I’ve written on an index card, or I might read Scriptures I’ve written in my Scripture index cards. I may read a Psalm. This way, I’m starting and ending my day with God’s Word. I’ve just recently started this and so far, it’s going pretty good. 🙂

    I also appreciate you emphasizing in part 2 the importance of having accountability. I love the idea I read about in the comments of having a friend or two to email each day about daily devotions. I think that is an awesome idea!

    Thanks for all the ideas and encouragement!

  5. Julie Sanders permalink
    July 22, 2010 7:46 am

    Karen, I have a picture in my mind of you snuggling up in the morning with your toddler to read and then reading your Bible while your little one keeps “reading” and “learning” from your example. It’s a great way to adapt our reading, while teaching them that we love God’s Word and consider it part of our day. Starting and ending with God’s truth is a great practice. I hope it keeps going well in your days.


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