Monday, July 19, 2010

Scripture Study in the Car

Never a Sunday goes by when we aren’t reminded how important daily scripture study is for us as individuals and families. Our leaders teach us how important scripture study is to keeping close to the Lord, His Spirit, and the personal revelation we need so badly to navigate ourselves and our families safely through a troubled world. Elder Bruce R. McConkie stated, “I sometimes think that one of the best-kept secrets of the kingdom is that the scriptures open the door to the receipt of revelation” (Doctrines of the Restoration, ed. Mark L. McConkie, Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1989, p. 243).

When my husband and I were first married, we knew that taking time for scripture study early in the day was important for our family, but we struggled to find time for it. It seemed we were always running late to get to school or work on time.

Elder Nelson has taught that “time for scripture study requires a schedule that will be honored” and that “you [should] shape the style of your study to fit you” (Russell M. Nelson, “Living by Scriptural Guidance,” Ensign, Nov 2000, 16–18). As a couple, we brainstormed and decided that our time and style of daily family scripture study would be possible in the morning in the car on the way to our daily tasks. My husband could drive while I read from the scriptures, Church magazines, or Church manuals. Although it was sometimes short and maybe not ideal, for the first time ever, our family scripture study became consistent. Sometimes we only read a few verses or a small part of a lesson or article, but as scripture study in the car became part of our routine, some amazing things happened.
We started savoring every minute we had to read the scriptures together in the car. In fact, traffic was no longer a problem because slow-downs just meant that we would have more time for scripture study. In addition, we started valuing the time we could make to discuss what we were reading as much as the time we had to read. Soon our scripture study discussions continued as we crossed the parking lot after we finished driving. Then we started coming back to the discussion during our lunch break and throughout the day. Eventually we started reading scriptures in the car on the way home and making more time for scripture study at home. These gems of family scripture study experiences helped us glimpse what Elder Nelson and his wife felt when he said “We shudder to think what might have happened if we had quit trying [to have family scripture study]. We all need guidance through life. We obtain it best from the standard works and teachings of the prophets of God.”
Simply starting and committing to a habit of family scripture study immediately blessed our family and made us excited to do more to make time for gospel study as part of our family’s habits. Elder Oaks has said that by reading the scriptures “again and again” in daily scriptures study, “we obtain access to what our Heavenly Father would have us know and do in our personal lives today” (Dallin H. Oaks, “Scripture Reading and Revelation,” Ensign, Jan 1995, 7).

Scripture study in the car has been a small and simple thing that has taught us the value of consistent scripture study and discussion in our family and encouraged us to find even more time for family scripture study. As Elder Bednar has said, “Each family prayer, each episode of family scripture study, and each family home evening is a brushstroke on the canvas of our souls. No one event may appear to be very impressive or memorable. But just as the yellow and gold and brown strokes of paint complement each other and produce an impressive masterpiece, so our consistency in doing seemingly small things can lead to significant spiritual results” (David A. Bednar, “More Diligent and Concerned at Home,” Ensign, Nov 2009, 17–20).

1 comment:

jkcook said...

We found the car the best place for morning prayer and often listen to scriptures, conference, church magazines, etc., in the car, too.