For those who may be interested in further reading, I thought I would share a list of resources I use regularly and confidently recommend:
the BIBLE ~ there is no greater source of Truth and Life and Light and Peace! God is faithful, through His Spirit, to reveal Himself to each person who reads and studies His Word. There is no more direct path to the cover of His Presence, to being awed by His Person, steadied by His truth or wrapped in love than to delve into His own Words for us! Read and linger over His love letter to you, revealing Himself and His Son, Jesus, and His eternal plan of redemption… and be amazed by Grace as your own heart responds!
DAILY LIGHT ~ a collection of Bible verses arranged for daily reading each morning and evening. This little book was originally compiled by Jonathan Bagster of London, England, as he prepared devotions for his own family. I use a copy published by Ann Graham Lotz through Thomas Nelson in 1998, which includes a forward written by Ann and a section of topical Bible references for special needs or occasions.
biblegateway.com ~ a website to look up any scripture reference in over 50 different translations… I find this helpful when trying to understand a broader or deeper sense of a given passage.
biblehub.com ~ a website to view a single verse in more than 20 different translations on one page… another option for looking for a broader and deeper sense of the language in a given Bible verse.
a NOTEBOOK ~ as you read and study God’s Word, write down what is meaningful to you, what stands out, what leaves you with questions, what you learn about God, what you learn about yourself… use a concordance or the notes in the margin of your Bible to find other verses that provide more insight into a given truth, or history behind a specific reference. Every once in a while, flip back through your notebook to revisit some of the things you have learned – you will be amazed at the connections you will find! Write favorite verses on index cards or sticky-notes that you can post on your mirror or kitchen cabinet or car dashboard to keep God’s Words fresh in your mind.
BIBLE STUDY FELLOWSHIP ~ an international, interdenominational, inter-generational organization of in-person OR online Bible classes that offers a four-step approach to in-depth study of God’s Word. The study is based on the Bible alone and challenges students to make new discoveries about God from His Word – His character, His truth, and His eternal plan of redemption through His Son, Jesus Christ. For more information and to find the location of a class near you, check out their website: bsfinternational.org.
shereadstruth.com ~ an online Bible study based on scripture alone (with the occasional exception when they cover a few days about hymns of the faith)… also available as an app or on facebook.
First 5 ~ an app from Proverbs 31 Ministries that is FREE! … intended to ground the first 5 minutes of your day in scriptural truth! Download it to enjoy a daily Bible study complete with scripture readings, devotional comments, and application questions to ponder. Through the app, you can also join in dialogue with other readers… and hear news about other resources and events available through Proverbs 31 Ministries.
EDGES of HIS WAYS by Amy Carmichael ~ a collection of daily devotional thoughts (with hymns and Bible verses) written by a British missionary who devoted her life to sharing her love for God and His truth with the orphans of India. [published by CLC Publications, edition 2000]
sarahagerty.net ~ a blog written by Sara Hagerty centering around a growing love of hers (and now mine!) called “adoration!” She has taken me by the hand over the past two years and drawn me into a hunger to know, really *know* this One who loves me and gave Himself for me! … you can also find Sara Hagerty’s adoration posts on instagram and facebook.
simply wholehearted podcast ~ interviews with various authors, sharing their stories of how the Lord has met them in their real life experiences, touched their hearts and directed them to share what they have learned in published or to be published books! These conversation keep it real, go deep, and honor God and His truth. I usually need a notebook handy to jot down pages of notes as I listen! Simply Wholehearted also has a presence on instagram and facebook.
out of the ordinary podcast ~ conversations between two authors and speakers, Christie Purifoy and Lisa-Jo Baker, as they tell the stories of God’s faithfulness in creating the truly extraordinary from their very ordinary moments. These conversations are also warmly genuine, keep it real and go deep! It is easy to imagine sitting on the front porch of Christie’s farmhouse, Maplehurst, with a cup of coffee, listening in (and sometimes joining in through the comment section!) to their chats. I usually need a notebook while listening to their podcasts as well… and several days to ponder the truths they discover as the wrestle it all out together!