Oh, Dearest Mother, Sweetest Virgin of Altagracia, our Patroness. You are our Advocate and to you we recommend our needs. You are our Teacher and like disciples we come to learn from the example of your holy life. You are our Mother, and like children, we come to offer you all of the love of our hearts. Receive, dearest Mother, our offerings and listen attentively to our supplications. Amen.



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LLMom
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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 6:55am | IP Logged Quote LLMom

Could you ladies share how you spend your time alone with God? I am wanting to read more of the Bible. I think protestants are so much better at this. They know the Bible so well but I don't know where to start. Does anyone here do daily readings from the Bible? I am wondering if a certain book would be better than others? I am not as familiar with the OT as the NT so I want to include some of that.

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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 7:14am | IP Logged Quote stefoodie

We are following the 14 books from Jeff Cavin's The Great Adventure. Hubby and I both read the Bible early in the morning, for 15 minutes, followed by prayer time.

Right now we are in Numbers, which works out really well because we're also studying Creation to the Ancients.

After we read the fourteen books, I'd like to go back and reread using the Navarre Bible Commentaries. I started doing this with the Gospels before we started Great Adventure, but then it slowed me down so much and I was struggling to catch up with hubby and dd.

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Patty LeVasseur
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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 7:58am | IP Logged Quote Patty LeVasseur

Lisa, I have really struggled with finding time for this. I felt so overwhelmed mostly because of pressures from other people. Okay, let's see I am suppose to exercise for at least 30 minutes a day and read the Bible for an hour a day and homeschool my children and .... I would try and then I would fail and then I would do nothing.

What really worked for me was thinking about it in terms of the "Sharpening the Saw" thing from Franklin Covey and scaling it way back. So each morning I try to spend 10 minutes each doing mind, body, and soul. For me that means a Sudoku puzzle, exercise, and a devotional. I really enjoyed using "A Family Journal: A Homeschooling Mother's Companion" by Rita Munn from Catholic Heritage Curricula. It had a short Bible passage followed by a story from her life from which I inveriably learned something about being a better wife, mother, or Christian, a prayer, and then sometimes a receipe. After I finished that I started using a devotional from Woman of Faith. It is Protestant, but I haven't seen anything objectionable in this.

If you are looking for something that is more in-depth than this, the Ignatius Catholic Study Bibles are excellent. They are put together by Scott Hahn and Curtis Mitch and they have the Biblical text followed by extensive notes(usually their are more notes than text.) They may only be available for NT books though.

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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 8:31am | IP Logged Quote Helen

Here's a link to another thread on this topic.

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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 9:23am | IP Logged Quote mom2mpr

I have just started working on this and don't throw tomatoes at me but I listen to the daily readings online(someone had a link on their blog) while I unload the dw in the early am. Sometimes I have to play them twice because I miss something letting out the pup or getting her out of trouble. It has made a HUGE difference in my life and it is amazing how the weekly readings blend into Sunday. Just doing this has helped me know the bible better. I think we Catholics read a pretty good chunk of the bible over our 3 year cycle, I can't remember the exact percentage though.
Our schedule runs so busy I just cannot find time to sit quietly. Everyone is on opposite schedules and I am the administrator :)So, I get less sleep because I am up with the night owls and up with the early birds--and we just gave up our naps I do try to pray a decade of the rosary when sitting with each dc as they go to sleep. I also do a short adoration in our church chapel when ds is practicing with the childrens choir.
I hope you can find a way to fit some faith strengthening and learning into your already busy day--it has made a world of difference in my life.
Anne
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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 9:52am | IP Logged Quote LLMom

Actually, I have a set time to do this. I would just like to add Bible reading. Also, I really don't have the funds to buy anything else so I was just going to use the original source. I just wonder what book would be best or easiest to tackle first.

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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 10:14am | IP Logged Quote stefoodie

Lisa, if you want to follow the Bible Adventure Timeline, it starts with Genesis-Exodus-Numbers.

Basically what you're doing is reading the Bible like a novel, so you get the big picture first, then you use those books as pegs for the rest of the books when you get to them/reread.

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Patty LeVasseur
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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 10:18am | IP Logged Quote Patty LeVasseur

Oh sorry,
Well in that case I second what Stef said about reading them in the order of the Great Adventure. You don't need to buy this, but he suggests these books because they give you the historical outline of the Bible.

The books are: Genesis, Exodus, Numbers, Joshua, Judges, 1&2 Samuel, 1&2 Kings, Ezra, Nehemiah, 1 Maccabbees, Luke, and Acts.

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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 10:33am | IP Logged Quote Taffy

I am currently doing a daily bible study. It has been very uplifting and has helped me so much in my keeping to the faith. I have a long way to go but, step by step, I am learning and feeling the peace and contentment that comes with spending time with God each day.

I'd started out with a plan to spend an hour a day in the morning doing spiritual reading. It's been shortened now to 30 min. The only time I can seem to fit this in is in the morning when everyone else is in bed. Dh isn't interested or I'd try and do it with him.

I read the daily readings from the Mass and, now that I'm studying them more closely, find that it actually covers a lot of the Bible. I use my bible to read the readings as them I can read more if I feel the need to (which often happens). I will then read the meditations from The Word Among Us, either in my paper copy or online.

A few months ago, I started something that has really helped me to examine the readings more closely and it has really increased my attentiono to what I am reading! There are 20 virtues that correlate with the 20 mysteries of the Rosary. Each day, I will look to see if any of the day's readings correlate with any of these 20 virtues. If so, then I record them. I was originally doing this by hand but it became quite time consuming as I would write out the reading in full that matched up with the virtue. So, I've turned to my computer to cut and paste instead. I am now collecting a nice assortment of verses that I can look up when in need of meditating or remembering the virtues. For instance, today's reading was 1 Corinthians 13:1-13. That went into the file under the virtue "Love".

As I was on the computer anyway, I started including them on my blog as well. You can find them under the page "Rosary Reflections" if you like.

All of this takes about 30 min (unless I get distracted by the internet ). Might I suggest trying something similar?

BTW - If you don't care for "The Word Among Us" or want to follow the Bible in a more chronological fashion, here are several options...



But, the best advice of all, is to pick a time slot in your day and Just Do It

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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 10:37am | IP Logged Quote Taffy

Sorry Lisa, I guess I posted more than you were looking for.

I would still suggest following the Mass readings followed by reading the "Word Among Us" meditation online. The Bible I mentioned has a listing of study questions for every single part of the Bible but wasn't cheap.

Good Luck!

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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 10:38am | IP Logged Quote Willa

Patty, I like that idea of "sharpening the saw".

I have a one-year Bible but that method didn't work well for me. Still, it might be useful for some people.

Magnificat is a wonderful resource for the daily readings, with some reflections included.

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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 11:32am | IP Logged Quote mom2mpr

I have started listening to the daily readings online while I unload the dw--no tomtatoes, please--it is how I can fit it into my day. I sometimes have to replay them because I have to let the pup outside, get her out of trouble, etc. It doesn't take long though and has really changed my life. It is amazing how much the weekday can tie into the weekend and things just "spring to life" at Mass on Sunday. Just another option if your life doesn't allow sit down with a book to study, yet.
Anne
PS-I also learn a lot from going through the MagnifiKid with ds each week.
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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 12:00pm | IP Logged Quote JodieLyn

There's some free studies you can get here Catholic Home Study Service

And I've found some great insight from "Making Sense Out of Scripture" by Mark Shea

And I also get the most Bible reading done by sticking a Bible in the bathroom

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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 1:33pm | IP Logged Quote AnaB

When my twin boys were born and I had 3 children 2 yrs and under and my husband was working 2 jobs, I started having panic attacks, especially in the morning. I was up all night with two kids with reflux (didn't know to medicate) and I had no help or even visitors. I was always exhausted.

But the Lord impressed on me to make no plans and think of nothing else but meeting with Him in the morning. There were times I'd get interrupted so I'd save it for nap time (that was before homeschooling). I've been getting up at least an hour before the children for several years now. Even if I get up late, I still don't miss my time with the Lord. I NEED it! This is the only way I have found to be successful at keeping anxiety at bay.

I have read through the Bible in a year a few times, but this time I really wanted to savor it. So, I read one chapter of one book of the Bible. I started with Matthew, then Genesis, then Mark. When I finish a NT book, I read an OT book. I also read one Psalm and possible a Proverb chapter for the day.   Then I pick a verse (or read till I find a verse) that strikes me and I copy it and journal my prayer to the Lord that day.

I try to also read a devotion book and pray at 1pm (Reading Rainbow time for the kids) and to read some Scripture before bed (that's the time I am not as consistent in--I fall asleep!).

I really like the visual picture of giving the Lord the firstfruits of our day. We are encouraged to tithe off the top with our money and it seems so fitting to tithe our time off the top or give of the first fruits. I really treasure this time with my Abba. It is the foundation of my life--what I build the rest of my day upon.

I also like the idea of occasionally fasting from everything but the Bible in my Spiritual reading, at least for my morning times. It's like the literal clutter in my house! Sometimes it's nice to have some "simplicity" in my devotional times with the Lord.

I also keep a prayer list. On Mon I pray for my family, Tues. extended family, Wed. friends, Thurs for missionaries, Fri for country/government, Sat for church needs, and Sunday for praise. I also like to pray Scripture back to the Lord drawing alot from the Psalms.

Well, this was longer than I anticipated. I just want to encourage you in your efforts for establishing some Bible reading time. It's an effort that's worth working on. God's blessings on you as you seek to meet with Him. May He make your times together a balm for your soul and a source of refreshment and basking in His presence.

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Karen E.
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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 1:40pm | IP Logged Quote Karen E.

Another way to spend some time daily with Scripture is through the Liturgy of the Hours. The full set is here but it's very pricey. (I don't know where we found it, but my husband got me the set a couple years after I came into the Church and found it somewhere for about $100.)

A one-book version, which really is still great for laypeople can be found here and an even shorter, less expensive version can be found here.

The Liturgy of the Hours uses a cycle of Psalms, readings, both OT and NT, and also readings from the Fathers of the Church. I love it, and it does get you into Scripture.

A completely free, online version can be found at universalis.com Though they don't have the official translation of the Catholic Church, it's still an excellent resource. I used it for months before I was able to get the books.



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Posted: Sept 20 2006 at 1:41pm | IP Logged Quote Karen E.

Oh, yes, I also second everyone's recommendations on using the Cavins method of the 14 chronological books. I did that study several years ago with some friends and we all thought it was an excellent way to get "the story" and the overview of the Old Testament.

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