It wasn’t until I started writing, that I realized the importance of reading. Read books and magazines on subjects of your interest and even outside of your field of interest. Reading material on a variety of subjects is a source of knowledge.
Run a search on the web and you will find tons of articles and video’s explaining the benefits of reading books. Here are just a few:
- Strengthens the brain.
- Increases empathy.
- Builds vocabulary.
- Prevents cognitive decline.
- Reduces stress.
- Aids sleep.
- Alleviates depression.
- Lengthens lifespan.
Besides daily Bible reading, from which I draw faith, strength, conviction, confidence, boldness and inspiration, my reading habit consists of business books, entrepreneurship, self-help, self-care, family affairs, culture etc. Additionally, I practice reading in four languages as well. English, Dutch, Spanish and Papiamentu. Keep reading!
“A good reader makes a good writer.”
“The devotion of time and attention to acquiring knowledge on an academic subject, especially by means of books.” [Dictionary]
Increase your knowledge on any subject of your interest is to your own benefit. Study, analyze, and compare translations, commentaries and interpretations. Take a course online or offline. Listen and watch motivational videos. The Bible also encourages self- study.
“Study to show thyself approved unto God, […], rightly dividing the word of truth.” II Timothy 2:15
When you take the time to study even the basics on a particular subject, it creates confidence and self-esteem. You become better organized and effective in planning your goals. Without getting into every detail, you have a basic knowledge on the subject and rid yourself of ignorance.
To visualize something is to be able to see it in your mind. Visualizing is as ancient as the planet. I was told that our ancestors visualized what they were going to eat before setting off to hunt. Visualizing is also biblical.
“Call those things which be not as though they were.” Romans 4:17
“When you visualize, then you materialize.” Denis Waitley
“Therefore I say unto you, what things so ever you desire, when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them.” Mark 11:24
What is prayer? Again there are tons of sacred and secular definitions of prayer. To me prayer is simply communicating with God. I was taught to pray daily, at the dawn of day. Over the years my modus of prayer has changed. No longer by tradition but by conviction!
“Pray without ceasing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:17
My interpretation of this verse is to have an attitude of prayer. I pray during my morning walk, while swimming in the ocean, in the bus and on my knees, in the privacy of my home. I confess the living Word into my life, because I believe in the Power of Words.
“Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.” Proverbs 18:21
Communication is an interaction of speaking and listening. I was taught to pray, but not to meditate. Some Christians associate meditation with eastern religions and paganism. After praying, -talking to God- it’s now time to be quiet and allow God to speak to you. How do I listen to God? In the silence, in meditation.
“I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways.” Psalm 119:5
Verses on meditation are found in both the Old and the New Testament, but mostly in the Psalms. I’ve been practicing this method for the past seven years. During hardship I decided to stop playing small, shallow and superficial and dig deeper into the Word.
“But his delight [is] in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.” Psalms 1:2
There are people who don’t believe nor practice any of these principles, yet they have the wind in their sales. What can I say? Personally, I believe, that our lives are guided by Universal Laws, set in place by the Creator. One doesn’t need to be religious to understand and practice these laws in order to reap the benefits. God is sovereign and He favors the just and the unjust with his grace and mercy, whether we are conscious or unconscious of this.
“Where there is peace and meditation, there is neither anxiety nor doubt.” Sr. Francis de Sales
The spirit of man is the candle of the Lord, searching all the inward parts of the belly.” Proverbs 20:27
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