September 12


What Should We Do When We Don’t FEEL Like Reading the Bible?

By Anna Joy

September 12, 2016

What do you do when you know you should read the Bible but you really don’t feel like it?

Do you force yourself to read anyway? And, if you do, isn’t that legalistic?

What should you do when you don't feel like reading the Bible? If you force yourself to read anyway, is that "legalistic"? Here's the surprising answer...

Bible Reading, Hunger, and Bad Attitudes

Have you ever been really, really hungry? Did your hunger affect your attitude?

I struggle with hypoglycemia. When my blood sugar drops low, it is not pretty. I get physically weak, shaky, emotional, and I am unable to think straight. I often burst into tears at the least provocation, or I yell at people. It’s really, really not good.

There’s only one way to combat this problem: I must intentionally eat high protein foods regularly, whether I want to or not.

This morning, I ate a fried egg. I didn’t want to make that fried egg. And, I didn’t feel like eating it, either. But I knew that by 10:30 a.m., the results in my own attitude and outlook on life would be disastrous if I did not force myself to eat an egg in the morning.

In the same way that I choose to eat an egg every morning, I choose to read the Bible each day.

Open Bible

Some Days Bible Reading Is Difficult…

I wish that I could say that it is the chief joy of my day and that I never struggle with thinking of Bible reading as a chore. But, I can’t say that.

Some days it is difficult to make Bible reading a priority. Some days are busy, tempting me to neglect Bible reading. Some days, Bible reading feels dry and monotonous and, frankly, like a waste of time. (Have any of you read through the book of Numbers? I know that it’s the inspired Word of God, but…) And, some days I feel apathetic in my relationship with God.

And yet, I still desperately need to discipline myself to read God’s Words, even when I don’t feel like it.

I know that, in the weakness of my sinful flesh, I need the Bible to help me get through each and every day.

Abiding in God’s Love

In John chapter 15, Jesus calls us to abide in His love. He reminds us that we can do nothing without Him. He commands us to abide in Him.

How can we do that? Jesus tells us!


We abide in Gods’ love by keeping His commandments. We can only keep His commandments if we know them. And, we can only know God’s commandments if we are in His Word.

The True Reason We Should Be Reading The Bible

I do not read God’s Word everyday because this time spent reading will grant me favor with God and salvation. Jesus Christ has already done that in my place with His work on the cross.

I do not read because I am hoping that God will reward me with a good day if I read and might punish me with a bad day if I don’t. Bible reading is not a good luck charm.

Instead, I read God’s Word because I long to abide in Him. I read because I desperately need to have God align my heart with His.

I want to follow God and obey His commands. Therefore, I must know what He expects of me. And, I can only know that through His Word.


When we pick up God’s Word each day, we are inviting God to mess with our lives, to adjust our thinking, to align our hearts with His. We are abiding in Him.

Sometimes our Bible reading tastes like fresh-from-the-oven pumpkin muffins and flavored coffee on a cold morning – full of joy and comfort.

Sometimes our Bible reading tastes like a slightly overdone fried egg – dry and tasteless.

And, sometimes our Bible reading tastes like a multivitamin – convicting and hard to swallow.

But no matter how we “feel” about our Bible reading, God’s words give us life each and everyday.  As we read, know, and obey His Words, we grow to abide in His love and we begin to experience the joy that He has promised.

So, what should we do when we don’t feel like reading the Bible? I believe that we should pick it up and read (or listen!) anyway. Because, that is when our hearts most need to be reminded to abide in Him and in His love.

How about you? Do you struggle with daily Bible reading? Do you discipline yourself, or do you feel that is too legalistic? Why or why not? I would love to hear from you. Please scroll down to comment.

And, if you liked this post, please help me by sharing it. Scroll down and click on the share bar below. I really appreciate it!

May God bless you!

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  1. Thankyou. I went the whole day without spending any time with the Lord. I replaced a hunger for God with food which did not satisfy. Ijust told God I want to experience Him on a deeper level yet spent no time with Him the next day. Your words encouraged me and showed me the TRUTH. So Thankyou! I’m reading the WORD tonight.

  2. I always felt so condemned when I don’t read His Word daily, in a specific order or at a specific time. The same went for prayer….I felt to so bad or that my day will not go well…praise God for this pos.

    You have cleared up the reason why I read the Bible..thank you I thought I had to do it so that I was pleasing Him but it is rather to abide In Him and His Words to abide in me.

    Thank you a weight is off my shoulder and there is therefore now no condemnation to them who are in Christ.

    Ransomed ,Healed ,Restored Forgiven.

  3. This is an excellent article. It was what I needed to encourage me to read God’s word. God said His word is life to those who them and health to all of our flesh!! Thank you thank for your post. God bless you and the work He’s called you to.

  4. I’m a freshman in high school, and last year I was at a private Christian school, but this year I’m at public school so I feel like I’m not getting as much of the word as I used to before. And also before school started I was reading a lot more but now I’m so busy with school and volleyball that I feel like I’m not putting in the time that I need to spend with him and Bible reading doesn’t seem as desired to me now. But this really helped so thank you so much!

  5. I am a sophomore in High school and during the summer i was reading a lot, reading the Bible, commenataries on the Bible, refuting evolution books by Ken Ham, but for some reason now I dont have the want anymore, but this really helped, Thank You, God Bless You, have a great day.

    1. Awww, Sam, I think that we all have those times when God’s Word seems dry. Sometimes it is because we are harboring sin in our hearts. Sometimes, though, I think it might be God’s invitation to keep following after Him, even when we don’t feel like it. God will bless those who follow after Him, and all at once the reading of God’s Word will become sweet and a joy again. May God be with you and bless you, Sam. I am praying for you.

    2. Same here! I’m a sophomore also. And I did a Bible reading Challenge. Where we are reading the whole book of the New Testament in a month. I was able to do that. So I’m now reading the book of Samuel and I’m really struggling. It’s seems like a chore now

  6. Thank you I needed to hear that I being having problems in reading the word of God but I have called friends and my daugther and they have share scripture with me and help me they have read the bible to me I thank them it has made me read more of the word little a time.i try to make myself read weather I feel like or not.

  7. Thank you I needed to hear that I being having problems in reading the word of God but I have called friends and my daugther and they have share scripture with me and help me they have read the bible to me I thank them it has made me read more of the word little a time

  8. I obviously have a problem bevause I’m writing to you! ☺ It really bothers me that I don’t hunger for God’s Word like I used too. At one point in my life I couldn’t get enough of the Word. I want to have that desire again. Thank you for this article…it help a lot. I don’t feel so alone.

  9. I sometimes ask the Lord to give me a break from the shake as it were. I know if I ask God to stir things that need stirring, he most certainly will but therefore moments when.i don’t want him to because I’m too spiritually exhausted. So, thete are those moments I don’t pick up his word. Sometimes, I feel like I’m reading and he’s talking to me and other times, I come to passages that ate uninspiring. I suppose we can all go by our feelings and when we do, we suffer greatly for it.

    1. Hey there. Don’t worry…. we are exhausted when we try to do things on our own. We need God and His Grace to help us pull through even when we don’t feel like it. Father I thank you for Mary. I pray you may comfort her and guide her as Your child to the right path. Lead her. Amen

  10. There are lots of days where I don’t feel like reading my Bible, but those are the days where I must press in and faithfully read it and obey it.

  11. Yes . Lately I’ve been struggling to read my bible daily . I read more when I’m at work , than I do at home. I work night shifts. And the days I’m off. I barely pick up my bible. How much do you read when you do read? I feel like I should read and study more than I should.

  12. Anna, I am in this state of condition right now. It didn’t start until we moved into a brand new home we had purchased only with the instructions of the Almighty God. Moving in the home wasa chore and was really tiresome. The later came the emergency surgery I had to have. After this it seemed that it just as hard for me to pray than to read God’s Word. This bo I now struggle to pray and do devotions I ferquently thers me because I know who God is and who He is to me.I know i love Him because of what He has done in my life. I am a minister and had been preaching God’s Word for many years. This a place I have never been in before. I sometimes urns for an answer or the push I need from God to get back on track. Reading His Word Whu! I pick it up for about one minute and put it down. This really does bother me and to force myself to do so makes me wonder what is wrong with me spiritually. Any word from you to help me get through this will help. M. Bryant

  13. For me it’s been a week of reading everyday. I’m 35 and have thought about reading my Bible every day for at least 5 years now. I kept telling myself the body goes no where the mind doesn’t go 1St. Then I’d feel better thinking I was 1/2 way there. I’d pick it up from time to time. I’d pray more often then not. Well recently I started eating more than usual and smoking more than usual and instead of feeling full or relaxed after each binge I felt even more empty. All I could think each time was why do I keep consuming so much? Why do I feel empty and I mean literally empty. I have a strong faith in God… I pray. Every time I did this self evaluation I landed on my flesh is not starving my soul is. Finally I’ve had enough. And finally I am in the word daily. No matter how much I read or how little. I am here.
    Thank you for this article thank you for helping me understand myself a little bit more.

    1. Wow, Candy, what a powerful reminder to all of us. Thank you so much for being willing to share your struggles and victories. This struggle to deny the flesh and to instead feed our souls is something that ALL of us as Christians must battle with. May God be with you and bless you, and give you the courage and determination to keep coming back to His Word day after day!

  14. You are so right. It’s not about our feelings, it’s about abiding in Him. I have been skipping reading because I feel so disconnected from Him. I need to push past those feelings and do it anyway. I need to read even more when I feel that way. Thanks for the reminder.

    1. Kristina, I know exactly what you are talking about. I think that we all feel disconnected from God at different times, but He is glorified when we push past our feelings and continue pursuing Him. May God bless you!

  15. I struggle with bible reading sometimes because I believe my flesh doesn’t want me to feed my spirit. I don’t fight with it all the time but I do struggle some days. I don’t feel it is legalistic because God tells us to desire His word. We need to hear from him so why would it be considered wrong in any situation.

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