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Christians believe God speaks to us today by his Spirit, through what he has spoken in the past, and which is recorded in his written word, the Bible. Reading it for yourself is the most direct way of getting in touch with God. Prayer is the means we are given by which we can speak to God and develop a relationship with him.

However, it can be confusing and daunting if you have not done either before.

The best way to start is to begin small, reading a little from the Bible often, with prayer before and after. Read a few verses from the New Testament, particularly one of the Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke or John. Read something like six to twelve verses at a time, on a daily basis if possible. Read the passage you have selected a number of times, pausing after each reading to reflect on what is going on and what is being said. Ask God in prayer to speak to you through his word. What truths are being expressed and what might God be saying to me today through these verses? Sometimes cultural differences between our world today and the world in which the Biblical events unfolded means we will struggle to make sense of some parts initially. Many commentaries are available to help us with these bits, so keep going and come back to difficult parts later.

Prayer means simply speaking to God. Bringing to him what is on our hearts and seeking his light and direction for the way forward in our lives. In prayer we can thank and praise God, share our joys and sorrows with him, and ask for his guidance, wisdom, forgiveness and help in our lives. Daily devotional times have always been used by Christians to maintain their relationship with God and to become more like Jesus in their lives in the power of the Spirit.

The following websites can all help you develop a habit of reading God’s Word and include helpful suggestions about prayer. A life founded on God’s word and prayer will be one alive with God’s life-giving Spirit.

Devotional Resource

Bible Reading (100 key passages)

Bible Gateway

Walk Through  the Bible