One of the things that I learned from the Simeon Trust workshop last year is the importance of studying the Bible in community. We don’t have all the answers ourselves. In studying the Bible, it is important to study along with other believers in order to keep each other in check, making sure we are understanding the text properly and not going off into some strange interpretation. I recently did a study on the book of Romans on my own and found it quite challenging. It was overwhelming and I felt like I had no way to check myself that I was on the right track in my understanding. Now I realize that commentaries can be used as a way to check oneself and see whether our interpretations are in line. But there is much to be said about studying the Bible with others who are studying it at the same time and can provide accountability and balance. My husband has been studying the Bible with a friend for the last several years. They study on their own and meet weekly to discuss what they’ve learned. I have seen the growth in him by studying the Bible this way. I long for something similar. Group studies are one way that this can happen and I am part of a weekly study at our new church.
I would encourage you to be part of a group Bible study (not just a book study, but actually studying the Bible). Or pair up with another person of the same sex to study through a book of the Bible together. If meeting regularly is an issue, email can be a great way to discuss what we’re learning also. I have done that before with my family since we don’t live near each other. But try to find others to study the Bible with you rather than doing it on your own. The insights learned, the balance of keeping oneself on track, and the fellowship of learning the Bible together is invaluable for a Christian’s growth.