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Hello everyone! What are some of your favorite things to do on Sabbath? I like to watch nature shows, listen to music, and read! :)

What do YOU think?

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Chillin With the Bible

If youre devotionally-challenged, or even if youre not, heres how you can hang out with God and have fun.

If you’re devotionally-challenged, or even if you’re not, here’s how you can hang out with God and have fun.

Something about a new year makes people want to improve themselves, which is great, especially if it means carving out a regular devotional time or energizing  existing quiet time with God. All you need is . . .
• the desire. Listen to what David wrote  about time with God: “As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God” (Psalm 42:1, 2). You can have that same desire. Make a habit of desiring to know God in 2008.
• a time and a place. Pick a time that’s best for you. If you’re not a morning person, spend time with God at night. It doesn’t matter when you choose to spend time with Him, it’s just best to make it the same time every day. That way you’re less likely to skip it or forget it.
Where are you going to meet God? Find a place to get together where you won’t be distracted.
• a Bible. There are a lot of different versions of the Bible to choose from. Select which version you like best. If you aren’t sure, try reading the New International Version. It’s easy to read but still true to the Bible’s original text.
• a notebook. As you and God hang out, in a special notebook record your insights and thoughts. Include ways you plan to follow up on what you’ve read in God’s Word. Later you can look back and see how much progress you’ve made.
• a plan. Your devotional time should include reading God’s Word and prayer. It may also include music or other creative ways of worship. You’ll benefit more from your time if you plan ahead rather than reading Bible passages at random. Here are some ideas:
Choose a theme or problem area in your life and check out what the Bible has to say about it. Let’s use friendship as an example. Look up friendship in a concordance, a reference guide that lists all the verses in the Bible that include the word friendship.
As you look up the Bible verses listed, some of the verses won’t apply specifically to you or your life, but some will. Maybe you’ll need to read a few verses above and below your target verse to find out what’s going on. Don’t miss a true friendship story in 1 Samuel 20.
Study a Bible character. There are a lot of great men and women featured in the Bible. If you liked the story of David and Jonathan’s friendship, follow the life of either or both of them throughout 1 and 2 Samuel. Or read about Samson’s life—his downfall and final revenge in Judges 13-16. Read about the other judges in the same book. Read about brave Esther who saved her people in the book bearing her name.
Study a book of the Bible. Maybe you’ll  want to study 1 John, which talks about love. James and Proverbs are both books full of practical advice for Christian living. Check your church library or Christian bookstore for a book or commentary to help you better understand what you’re reading.
Try using a teen devotional book. Borrow one from your youth leader, or ask your youth leader for other devotional suggestions. Go to a Christian bookstore where a clerk will help you locate a good devotional.
If you’ve put off having daily devotions, if you don’t know how to start having daily devotions, or if you have a devotional life that’s a drag, there’s hope! Pick out a time and a place to meet God, grab your notebook and Bible, and spend time together. Start today!
Texts credited to NIV are from the Holy Bible, New International Version. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.

Katrina Cassel, M.Ed., lives with her husband, five of their children, and an assortment of pets in the Florida panhandle.

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