What if—instead of feeling guilty because you’re not spending consistent time in God’s Word during the busy holiday season—you actually enjoy the blessings of the Bible in new, fresh, and realistic ways that add to your enjoyment of the holidays?
What if—instead of excusing a break from God’s Word because “it’s temporary” and “I’ll get back to it when the holiday busyness is over”—you actually enjoyed a daily taste of the rich spiritual nutrition that’s found only in the Bible?
What if—instead of condemning ourselves (and each other) for failing to fulfill a legalistic “devotional” obligation by checking a box off our Bible reading list—we actually enhanced our holiday season by growing in our relationship with Jesus Christ through His Word despite the busyness?
It’s possible, my friend. By God’s grace, it’s absolutely possible to stay in God’s Word during the busy holiday season this year.
10 Tips for Consistent Bible Reading During the Holidays
I always try to present God’s Word as the priceless treasure that it is so you genuinely desire more of it. But my goal is also to convince you that consistent Bible reading and study is attainable for everyone, no matter who you are or what your schedule looks like.
Here are a few tips to help you stay in God’s Word throughout the holidays. This isn’t a formula. These ideas can be effective for everyone because they can be implemented in whatever way works for you.
You’re far less likely to stick to any goal if you’re working toward it just because you think you should. What’s your reason for wanting to stay in God’s Word during the holidays? Last year, I shared 15 reasons you need to read the Bible. Maybe those will inspire you to determine your own motivation.
Spending time in God’s Word requires intention. If you sincerely want to read the Bible every day during the holidays, decide that you’ll do it and decide how you’ll do it.
You can’t do this on your own strength. Ask for God’s help. This is a prayer He WANTS to answer!
What do you want the focus of your time in God’s Word to be? You might want to focus on a deeper understanding of the Christmas story. Or maybe your main focus is simply consistency—a little nugget of truth every single day. If family relationships are tense this time of year, maybe you want to focus on what the Bible says about love.
When deciding what to focus on, keep your motivation in mind.
We all love the ideal of the Instagram-worthy quiet time with our feet up by the fireplace and the Christmas tree lights glowing and a steaming cup of something soothing as we bask in the glory of God’s Word each morning. But for most of us, that’s not a daily reality.
What is a realistic expectation based on your current situation? Maybe it’s most realistic to aim for some dedicated time in God’s Word while waiting in the pickup line at your child’s school. Maybe it’s most realistic to accept that while you aim to spend time in God’s Word every day, it will happen differently every day.
We all have limited time, resources, and physical and mental capacity.
For years, my body required excessive amounts of sleep due to health challenges, so I was unable to wake up early, no matter how hard I tried. I didn’t have the physical capacity to have morning quiet times, even though I desperately wanted to. I had to adapt to my body’s needs by prioritizing time in God’s Word in the middle of the day.
Recognize your limitations, accept them, and do what you can to adapt. Remember what’s most important to you right now and say no to some activities and events. Set healthy boundaries on your time and energy—actually schedule dates and times for rest. Manage your mental capacity by taking a social media break or turning off your phone sometimes.
Even when you set realistic expectations, things change. The holidays rarely—if ever—happen according to plan. So stay flexible. Changing how you spend time in God’s Word one day or one month isn’t a failure. It’s about love, not legalism; relationships, not rules.
Prioritize church. It’s an opportunity to rest, read and hear God’s Word, and focus on Jesus Christ. Plus, there’s the benefit of fellowship.
Also, choose your Christmas music wisely. Songs about snowmen and winter wonderlands and bells are fun, but your heart will benefit more from Christ-centered carols. Spend a few moments in heartfelt worship while you’re driving or cooking or baking, etc.
The blessings of God’s Word are multiplied when you share them with others. You’re not the only person who struggles to stay consistent in Bible reading during the holiday season, so reach out to a friend or your family and commit to helping each other. Some ways you can do that include
- Selecting the same Bible reading plan or method
- A regular check-in
- Pray for each other
- Send a text of encouragement throughout the week
- Share what you’re learning or how God’s Word is ministering to you today
Change things up. I love taking a break from my usual routine during the holiday season. I find the change often revitalizes me spiritually and gives me a fresh perspective and a renewed appreciation for God’s Word.
5 Creative Ideas to Help You Feast on God’s Word During the Holidays
- Listen to an audio Bible. This is a great option for families with young children. Try Dwell.
- Read the Book of Luke—a chapter a day from December 1-24.
- Study the Christmas story. Try to see it with fresh eyes by reading it with a different focus. For example, imagine it from the perspective of the different people involved (Joseph, Mary, the shepherds, the angels, etc.). Or find out how the birth of Jesus fulfilled specific Old Testament prophecies.
- Meditate on and memorize a single verse each day. Try Philippians 2 or Luke 2 or another “Christmas” passage. Or choose a theme you want to grow in over the next four weeks (gratitude, or Godly speech, for example). My Bible Reading Plans might provide some inspiration.
- Pay attention to the lyrics of familiar Christmas hymns and spend time meditating on the Scripture that inspired them. It’ll give these songs new meaning to you and they’ll become a part of your worship rather than just background music. Some examples:
- O Little Town of Bethlehem—Micah 5:2
- The First Noel—Luke 2:8-15
- Joy to the World—Psalm 98
What are some ways you stay consistent in God’s Word during busy seasons? Share your ideas in the comments to encourage and inspire others.