Understanding the Reading

Now that school is back and we’re back into the routines that we love, many of you are probably thinking of two things: homework and tests. You’re not the only one, believe me. However, we have to remember to encourage others, as well as ourselves, every chance we get! This month’s idea is to find someone in your congregation who has trouble seeing and help them read (or read to them if their eyesight is too bad) their favorite passage or Bible verses. In this project, you will not only be improving their minds, you would be improving your knowledge of the Bible as well.

Prayerfully consider someone you know who may have trouble reading on their own because of their eyesight. Ask them what their favorite Bible verse, book, parable, or story is. Then ask them if they would like for you to read to them. Plan on discussing what the verses are talking about and the purpose of them. You can ask them if they would like to start in Genesis and read through the Bible together (which would take more than one session), read a chapter or two, or if they would like for you to both read a whole book together.

The person I studied with is a very loyal Christian man named Clyde. Clyde has what is called retinal detachment. The retina is the part of our eye that sends messages to our brain so that our brain can decode the messages to form pictures (what we see). His eyesight has been deteriorating for a while and I can tell that it saddens him that he can’t read his Bible and study it like he used to. He told me his favorite Bible verse was John 3:16 (“For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”) I didn’t have to read that to him, however. He read it to me from his memory. He then told me that his favorite book is Hebrews and I started reading it to him.

It is a good idea to read a couple of verses and then stop and ask them what they think the Bible is trying to say through those verses. Remember to take the verses in their context and remember what the writer is talking about. If you’re reading a very symbolic book (like Revelation), read it slowly and carefully (as we should do with every book) and emphasize that it contains symbolism.

I learned a lot from Clyde just from him allowing me to read to him. I learned about his passion for God and God’s word, what a faithful Christian he is, and that he’s a wonderful influence for me on how to stay faithful and how to motivate myself to learn more about God’s word. I don’t think that many of the teenage ladies understand just how much knowledge the older members of the church have, both in regard to the Christian life and life in general. We must always be willing to spread God’s word––not just once in a while. We should always be striving to get His word out to non-Christians. We will be mocked and our feelings will get hurt, but we will be leaving a wonderful legacy and our words could influence someone to search the scriptures and learn God’s word. And through all the mocking, the tears, and the anger, if we help influence someone we love to become a Christian and want to live faithfully for God, then it’s all worth it.

“So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.” – Nehemiah 8:8

By Alyssa Sturgill


  1. I’m sure that Clyde truly looks forward to your visits as you read the Bible to him. What a wonderful way to show God’s love! Keep up the good work!!

  2. You make me want to read the Bible to someone too! It’s so easy to forget about the elderly in our congregation, and you haven’t done that. Thank you for remembering them.

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