by Michael Plank

Most of you know we run a class at our gym called WAYS (With All Your Strength). That class is awesome. It mixes the Workout of the Day with some worship elements in a body, mind, spirit experience. Our vision at UPCF is to measurably improve the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health of our tri-county area. In other words, we want to make people’s lives better in every arena. This year in our WAYS class we’ve started assessing and charting spiritual development along with physical development (You’ll be hearing a lot more about that this year).

One of the first categories we look at is engagement with Scripture. We talk mostly about the Bible, because that’s our primary context, but reading and/or listening to a Holy Text is central to lots of traditions. It grounds you, it connects you with tradition, it teaches you how to live, and it builds a shared experience between you and others. BUT, it can be super overwhelming. Those texts were usually written centuries ago. They usually aren’t written in ways that are as easy to read as we’re used to. And they usually were written from a different context to people living in a different world than we are today. But that doesn’t mean it can’t still be a rich experience!

So if reading or listening to Scripture is something you want to tackle, here are a few tips I’ve found to be super helpful (note: much of this is specific to the Bible, but I hope some can be helpful with other texts).