Friday, September 9, 2016

The Labor of Studying

And further, by these, my son, be admonished: of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh.  (Ecclesiastes 12:12 KJV)

As a new school year gets underway, I am reminded of my time as a student—all the new experiences, meeting new people, and learning new ideas—the experiences that have played a role in who I am today.  At the beginning of a new year there seems to be a sense of possibility—dreaming new dreams, discovering new things about yourself and others.  There seems to be something special about new pencils and new notebooks that harkens to a fresh start full of possibility.  Some students may discover a teacher or other staff member that they seem to “connect” with and a mentoring relationship begins to develop.  While mentoring in the academic or professional sense is important, there is a mentoring that is even more important (and the topic of last week’s post) spiritual mentoring.   

And further, by these, my son, be admonished: of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh.  
(Ecclesiastes 12:12 KJV)

How amazingly true are the words written by King Solomon!  Studying does indeed weary the body!  Any thesis or dissertation writer would agree that there is no end to making many "books" and no end to writing many “papers”!  Worldly endeavors encountered as we journey through our school years is most definitely toil—toil that should cause us to feel utterly weary.  However, we will discover that what we do for the Lord is not wearying in the same way.

How or when have you found studying to be wearing?

For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.  (Ecclesiastes 1:18 KJV)

Some students might even agree that with wisdom and knowledge there is sorrow and grief, particularly if God is left out of the equation.  Living in the world, pursuing worldly pleasures and worldly ideals is a sure formula for experiencing grief and sorrow.  Think about all the time and pressures incurred in pursuing a college education—graduation comes and reality sets in that the world is much different than the academe led students to believe.

Kim nearing college graduation, spring 1995

When or where did you discover sorrow and grief in gaining wisdom and knowledge?

The best study we can do is being a student of God’s Word.

As students and teachers start another year of learning and growing together, we too, can renew our commitment to studying the Word of God.  However, we need to do more than simply read and study; we need to apply what we are learning to our lives.  Reading and studying God’s Word really should not exhaust us (at least not in the way we were accustomed to as students elsewhere).

Personal Photo

Personal Photo

For those of us who preach, teach, and write about the Word of God, we will be held to a higher standard by Him (see James 3:1); therefore, we would be wise to heed Paul’s admonition to his spiritual son, Timothy:

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.  (2 Timothy 2:15 KJV)

Do not become weary with too much reading, studying, doing that you neglect sitting quietly waiting on God and His still small voice.  It is here that we find rest for our weariness, a balm for our aching, hurting soul.  In this quiet, secret place as we commune with the Lord and He communes with us, we discover refreshment that our entire beings crave; yet rarely find in this noisy and busy world.  

If you are interested in getting into God’s Word, I encourage you to do so and check out this year’s 50 Day Spiritual Adventure.  (Readings for the week of September 11 will be posted early morning September 11, 2016.)

What portion of Scripture does God have you studying?

Please join with me in prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for the most amazing gift of Your Holy Word.  It truly contains all we need to live the life You have given us.  Please give us an ever deepening hunger for Your Word; help us to study it diligently and not grow weary.  Guide us in our study and application of Your Word, so we do not wear ourselves out with much study of things not of You.  For those of us who preach, teach, and write about Your Word, help us to be diligent in our study and to rightly divide the Word of God.  In Jesus’ Name we pray.  Amen.

From My Heart to Yours,



  1. Being in God's Word should never make us weary, I agree, Kim. And the key here, as you said above, is not simply reading and studying Scripture, but applying it to our lives. Trying to do that more and more!
    Love and blessings!

    1. Martha, thank you for stopping by and commenting. It's not always easy to go beyond simply reading to the application stage; however,the importance can't be denied. Much like learning to apply learning beyond the textbook, applying the Bible to our daily lives takes a lot time. Thankfully we have a loving, accessible, and patient teacher in the Holy Spirit.

      Love and blessings!


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