Yesterday our bishop spoke in church. He gave the same message he always gives. It is a good one. And I always need to hear it. He tells us to pray and study the scriptures. He challenged us to read 10 pages of scriptures a day. That is a tall order for me. But I decided to try to do it. It took me 30 minutes this morning and about that long last night.
I guess I will see how many days in a row I can keep up with his challenge. I am currently in Alma chapter 5. I am hoping to at least stick to the challenge till I complete the Book of Mormon. I have never read it that quickly before and I think it will be a good experience for me and help me see the story in a new way by reading it fast for a change.
Daily scripture study is a hard habit to establish. I had an incredible seminary teacher named Garth Tesch that helped me set that habit really firmly as a 14 year old. Now as I work with 14 year olds, I want so much to teach them to turn to their scriptures as they seek answers and direction for their life. It has helped me so much. But I find it is often a hard habit to get them to pick up.
So I have been trying with my own children to start it much earlier. I have felt a few times that I need to have my girls reading scriptures every night. I tried months ago to have them read their own scriptures for 5 minutes at night as part of their nightly reading. That didn't last because they forgot to take their scriptures back up to their room after church or couldn't find them. And it was hard for them to read for 5 minutes by themselves without me explaining everything.
So we had just been reading as a family in the morning during breakfast. (We have had that habit for a couple of years now.) After our last stake conference (the same time I introduce a TV limit) I had a new idea for independent scripture study for the girls. The most important thing to me now is that they get in the habit of reading scriptures. I am not concerned with how much they understand or how long they read. So I thought I would have them read as many verses as they are old.
That has worked out so well. It is the perfect amount for each of their ages. Often they will excitedly tell me they read a few extra verses too. We have an inexpensive Book of Mormon in their room that never leaves and they each take a turn reading their verses at night. I read Lauren's to her for now. Hopefully she will be reading them herself next year.
What do you do to teach your kids to turn to the scriptures for answers and direction? How have you tried or successfully established a habit of daily scripture study in your home?