Studying the Bible is best done as a team sport.
Several years ago, I had exactly that going on. A buddy named Dave and I had a Bible Study Pact. We’d been in men’s groups together and really found that we had a compatible desire to get into God’s word.
I started by showing Dave how I studied the Bible. It wasn’t the Six Easy Steps method but it certainly involved the same concepts (actually it was the intermediate version of the Six Easy Steps method). This was essential for us to study together. We had to follow the same process.
Because we did it that way, we were able to coach each other on the process as well as the outcome. That’s critical. That meant that we helped each other grow.
Every Sunday morning (before church) we jumped on a Skype call at 6;00 AM. That’s early but we found it enjoyable to spend time together, and loved the time together in God’s word.
We kept this up for years. Every week we studied alone during the week according to whatever we had decided was the text. Then we got together to talk about the process and what we discovered.
Every once in a while I go on a tour through my computer and find the study notes from those days. It really makes me smile to remember them. It was a real time of spiritual exploration and growth.
We don’t do it any more (but I suppose we could pick it back up). But those were great days of spiritual development.
So let me lay it on the line for you.
You could do this too.
If you asked me, I would say you should do it. But you will have to make your own decision on this.
You don’t have to pick someone who lives far away, forcing you to do the whole thing on Zoom or Skype. In fact it’s a lot easier to be in person and do it over coffee or tea.
But finding a Study Buddy can make all the difference to your study habits.
* It offers a sense of companionship as you study.
* It requires you to explain your thought process. This can deeply enhance your understanding of what you’ve studied. Explanation is a real gem for bringing clarity.
* It’s a wonderful accountability tool when you get into a study funk and are looking to find your way out.
* It exposes you to an alternative set of interpretations that can enrich your own study.
* You’ll find a whole new way of looking at the text through your buddy’s eyes.
* It allows you to have a positive spiritual impact in someone’s life – while they have a positive spiritual impact in yours.
* It reinforces the cadence of study – which is a surprisingly powerful tool to unleashing the power of God’s word in your life.
Simply put, a study buddy is a tremendous benefit for anyone who wants to grow deeper in their relationship with God. It’s kind of like we were designed as humans to function this way (spoiler alert, we were).
Odds are, if you’ve read this far, you have a name in mind that you think would be a great study buddy. Someone that you want to mentor. Perhaps someone who you think would be a great companion on the journey.
You just need to ask.
The nature of the relationship will take care of itself. All you need to be is faithful to take the next step. Ask them to study with you.
The worst they can say is “No.” But even then they will be flattered that you thought to ask. On the other hand, they just might say “Yes!”
You have no idea how impactful that simple question could be in someone’s life.
If they don’t know the Six Easy Steps method, then you’ll have some catching up to take them through. It’s important that you have a method in common.
Dave and I have a connection because of those studies. It’s richer and deeper that ever before. And when it came down to it, Dave was one of the strongest voices that encouraged me to start writing books. If not for him, I might not have embarked upon the journey that let to this point.
You never know how simple decisions made in faith will turn out. You can only take them and see what happens.
So let this be the encouragement to take that step.