Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Summer Growth Needs A Plan

copyright Jeanne Doyon

Summer is finally here and I'm spending a little time each day tending my herb garden. I love seeing the new growth...chives, oregano, thyme and parsley. My potted flowers are flourishing too. Butterflies and hummingbirds make daily visits and I love watching them.

The summer brings a break from our crazy schedules. Even the church calendar slows down. But, with that comes less opportunities to gather around the Word. So we need a growth plan.

I began this year with the word Intentional. Though I am looking forward to the slower pace, I want to plan ways to grow spiritually. Will you join me? 

Here are a few ideas to get into the Word of God during the summer months. I would love to hear from you as you discover ways to grow in your knowledge of Him.

Summer Growth Ideas:

Choose One of the Gospels
Read one chapter a week (reread it each day) taking note of things like people, conflicts, lists, Words of Jesus, or Common themes.

Circle or underline the words: If, Then, Therefore, So That, All, and take note of Promises, Warnings, Good news, Bad news, etc.
Take note of things that stand out to you (words, phrases, repeated thoughts)
What is God saying to you through His Living Word?
How does what you discover impact you today?

Choose a Theme/Topic (love, peace, forgiveness, holiness, etc.)
Use a concordance (see suggestions below) to compile a list of verses for your word study
Memorize verses that especially speak to you. (Hide the Word in your heart)
Keep a journal.
How does your word study transform your thinking about your chosen topic.

Choose a Biblical Character
Read everything about them in Scripture, using cross references. You may find references to Old Testament people in the New Testament, so do a comprehensive search.

Take note of their strengths, weaknesses, sins, fears, attitudes, accomplishments, etc.
Note contrasts in their personalities
Before and after – How are they transformed?
What did they learn from their encounters?
Make connections to your life. How are you like or unlike this character?

copyright Jeanne Doyon
There are many other topics and study resources available. You may want to consider delving into the parables of Jesus, customs of Bible times, Biblical Geography, Old Testament feasts and their New Testament connections and more. 

Like a garden, tend a little area this summer and watch your spiritual growth increase.

What plans do you have for growth this summer?

I'll keep you posted on my growth plan...enjoy the summer break!

Online Bible Study Tools: 

This is one of my favorite study resources:


  1. This is great, Jeanne. I've been doing a self-guided, in-depth study of the OT. The end of the summer will round out 2 years and my goal is to finish by then. I've been so blessed by some of the books we never seem to study in church. After that, I'm starting a chronological study of the gospels. I've never studied it that way and I'm excited about it.

  2. Sounds like a wonderful plan, Sherry. Feel free to share a few insights here.

  3. Such insight, Jeanne.........thank you. I love to sit on my porch surrounded by the trees, birds, and the blue sky. Taking time to hear,feel and read about our "Rose of Sharon" "Lilly of the Valley"
    We are so blessed.......Love Mom

  4. This was really helpful Jeanne. In particular, I'm going to try to focus my reading on the if, but, then, words because these connections have significant meaning. I loved all the ideas and will pass them along.

  5. Thanks, MOM. I love the names of Jesus...names of God. They are a rich study indeed.
    We encounter Him like the people in the Bible. Hagar found the God who Sees. Moses, His Banner. Abraham, Jehovah-Jireh (our Provider) and so many more.
    I have found Him faithful, He listens, sees, comforts...

  6. Cathy, we will always be learning--finding new insights in His word. Someone who has only read the Bible once like a book is missing out on the LIVING Word :)
    I look forward to hearing your discoveries.


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