Category Archives: Spiritual Discipline

Prayer Does Not Cure ADHD

Prayer and ADHD

Things That People Have Said To Me About ADHD:

Have you tried praying that your ADHD will go away?

When you’re distracted, pray.

God can heal your ADHD.

Are you sure you have ADHD?

I thought only children had ADHD.

I came upon this blog post by Andy Lee  http://wordsbyandylee.com/how-to-focus-adhd-prayer/.

I’m not sure if she has ADHD, but she titled her post “How to Focus ADHD Prayer.” She listed the following symptoms checklist:

Do you have trouble focusing your thoughts when praying?

Do you pray the same prayers everyday?

Do you get bored when praying?

Do your prayers get lost in your plans or worries for the day?

Her solution: “If you struggle praying, if focus is impossible, there is a very good chance the enemy is running interference. Put on your helmet. Tell Him to go away in Jesus’ name.

She and others who take this approach are certainly people of faith. They have met spiritual interference and battled it with the help of God’s mighty spirit and strength. This is great, but ADHD is not a spiritual battle. It is not a sin. It is not something that can be prayed away.

Those of us with ADHD do need God’s help when dealing with the symptoms of ADHD, but I must be clear in stating that ADHD is not a spiritual disability.

Distraction A Warning

If we keep our focus solely on our disability instead of focusing on our abilities, yes, we will eventually beat ourselves down spiritually. If we don’t keep our emotions in check we can end up believing things that are not from God such as thinking:

-we are not good enough

-we don’t have gifts and talents to offer the world

-there is something wrong with us

-we are less godly or spiritually disciplined than “normal” people

If you have ADHD please know and believe that you do not have a spiritual disease. While spiritual disciplines and faith in God can help you manage your symptoms, it cannot “cure”, “solve”, or “get ride of” ADHD.

ADHD Prayers: God, Did You Get That?

 

Confession time! Sometimes praying together in groups is really difficult for me. It’s not that I don’t care about the prayer requests of others, it’s more of an issue with paying attention and staying focused.

There were times when I would be in a group of at least ten people. We’d be sitting in a circle, each of us presenting our requests for prayer. Each of us with a back story to our requests for divine intervention.

As I mentioned, I care about each and every individual that asks for prayer, but by the second or third person my attention span would start diminishing. I once made a habit out of writing down every request in a mini-notebook so I could remember everyone’s needs during the week, but even that began to take great efforts in focusing. Doodle, doodle, write, doodle, doodle, write…grocery list, to-do lists, and…back to writing prayer requests.

Eventually it would be my turn to share. I would start out on point but within a few sentences I would be on my ADHD rabbit trail of thoughts. Sometimes I would pause and think to myself, “What was it again that I’m asking for prayer about

Soon it would be time to pray out loud. Prayer time would take on a stomach turning feeling. It was knowing that I would have to sit silently listening to between ten and twelve people praying. I would now have to be still in my seat, or worse, sitting on someone’s living room carpet, cross legged, toes numb, trying my best to sit upright and not doze off.

Were these thoughts and actions appropriate from a Christian woman in the midst of prayer?  No, they weren’t; but the reality is these were the thoughts, actions, and feelings I experienced. I wish ADHD was an excuse, it’s not, but it certainly is a cause and a reason for my struggles with staying focused and paying attention during group prayer times. There were people who told me confidently that this issue was a spiritual battle; it was spiritual warfare they said.

I would love to blame my issues with focusing on that ever-so distracting horned devil and his pitchfork, but the real issue is and remains a problem resulting from ADHD. Having Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is not a spiritual attack from some evil supernatural force. As I continue to work on mindfulness and meditation techniques, my ability to focus during prayer has increased, but I still have a long way to go. There are those with ADHD who have no struggles with staying focused during long sessions of prayer requests and praying; I consider those of you in this category lucky!

Power of Prayer - Max Lucado

ADHD becomes a spiritual battle when you let others convince you that your symptoms are not real. Or when people accuse you of not “trying hard enough”. It becomes a spiritual battle when people call you lazy. The spiritual battle continues when you fall into the vicious cycle of self-doubt, resulting from years of embarrassing mistakes or a series of memorable failures. The spiritual battle is sometimes that feeling of rejection and loneliness because you once again unintentionally pissed someone off and are now filled with anxiety, guilt, anger, and hurt. You can say, “I’m sorry”, but you can never say, “I won’t do that again,” or “This is the last time I _____,” because you know that with ADHD it is never the last time that you’ll be late. It is never the last time that something stupid, embarrassing, or oops, will ever come flying out of your mouth. It will never be that last time that anxiousness, worry, and fatigue has made you a prickly person to be around.

You see, it’s not ADHD that is a spiritual battle, it’s the emotions and feelings that result from dealing with this disorder that create spiritual struggles. Your disorder is not a sin.

Thankfully God is everywhere, and He is always there to listen to us in prayer. I may not have been able to be fully focused during group prayer times, but God is understanding. I trust that my prayer time, regardless of how often I have to refocus myself, is welcomed by God. He is faithful to us, even those of us with ADHD prayer requests. The disordered thoughts of our prayers exit our minds and mouths, and get straight to God all clear and in order.

Adhd and faith challenges

ADHD and Thanks-Giving

ADHD Thanksgiving 1

As followers of Christ, every day is a day for giving thanks, but what makes Thanksgiving Day different is that you have one day where the entire nation collectively gives thanks and acknowledges the good things they have in life, be it family, friends, material goods, or health.

I’ve always believed in the importance of cultures and communities having holidays for remembering and acknowledging the past and the present. Thanksgiving is a holiday that always reminds me that we can always find the good and the positive in the midst of struggle and injustice. I see the systemic injustices and atrocities that are occurring in other parts of the world and I can’t not help but give thanks to God for being fortunate enough to live in North America.

So this year I encourage you to give thanks for something no matter what your circumstances are right now. Collectively as Americans we have plenty to give thanks for. Thanks be to God!

Give thanks Lord

As I was preparing to write this blog entry I had to stop and think about whether or not there really was anything to be thankful for in terms of having adult ADHD. Well, I found some!

ADHD and Things to Be Thankful For

Energy. When used properly, the energy we get from having ADHD allows us to accomplish a lot of things, sometimes more than the average person.

Creativity. When your mind is constantly thinking of multiple things at the same time and always on the go, you can end up developing a lot of ideas that are “outside the box”. For those who are ADHD day dreamers, you can sometimes turn those dreams into very creative ideas and concepts that others might not have thought of.

Adventurous. Sometimes ADHD gives people the ability to combine their energy and creativity which results in an adventurous spirit; think Richard Branson.

Knowledge. One of the best things about the ADHD attention span is that when we’re interested in a topic, subject, hobby, or activity, we delve in deep. Ask us anything you want to know about something we are interested in and we will likely have the answer; just be prepared for a long, animated, and passionate answer!

Medical care. Being finally diagnosed with ADHD as an adult has changed my life in too many ways to mention in this short post. I am thankful for doctors and psychologists who have studied ADHD and contributed to medical advances in the treatment of ADHD. Over the years I have taken medication for ADHD, but more helpful than this has been the alternative treatments that I’ve used to help manage my symptoms. I am also thankful to have assistance with covering the high costs of prescriptions. Mindfulness, meditation, and exercise have proven to be effective means for controlling my worst symptoms. I am thankful for those who teach and share these alternative methods.

Having rights. Having ADHD recognized as a disability in the workplace and educational institutions is important. I don’t think I would have made it through college if there wasn’t a department for students with disabilities. The specialists helped me stay focused and accountable; I was also able to take exams in a separate area so I wouldn’t disturb other students with the constant clicking of my pen, the shaking of my legs, humming, and my need to read things out loud. In the past people with ADHD weren’t recognized as having a disability and it made life more difficult for them than it had to be. Today, things have changed and I am thankful for this.

My list is not going to be the same as yours. We all have varying degrees of symptoms and different life circumstances; but I encourage you to take time this Thanksgiving season to make your own mental or written list of ADHD related things that you are thankful for. Having adult ADHD isn’t always easy, but there is always something to be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving!

 

Listening Mindfully

Day 26 Listening Mindfully

You must understand this, my beloved: let everyone be quick to listen, slow to speak,…” James 1:19

This year I fulfilled one of my long term blogging goals by participating in a 31 day writing challenge at write31days.com . I can’t say it has been easy. I’ve fallen behind in writing on some days, on worse days I’ve forgotten to post what I’ve written.

I chose to write 31 Days of Mindfulness for Christians. In the past I read great things about the benefits of mindfulness for those with ADHD. Initially I was turned off by the Eastern religious element to mindfulness, but with enough searching I found plenty of mindfulness and meditation teachings and practices that were completely secular. My 31 day series is intended to be mindfulness for Christians.

I encourage you to click here or “31 Days of Mindfulness” at the top of this blog site and check out some or all of the short, basic, and introductory topics related to mindfulness. If you haven’t already, I encourage you to read the research on mindfulness and  management of ADHD symptoms in adults.

This blog entry below is from day 26 of this mindfulness series.


 

Listening is the ability to accurately receive and interpret messages communicated to us. Listening requires focus. As we will later learn from James, listening and hearing are two different things. Hearing is about sound perception or being informed of something.

The purpose of listening is to: obtain information, understand what is being communicated to you, and to learn.

As a woman with ADHD, I can’t say that I’m slow to speak. When my ADHD behaviour lets loose I can speak a lot; more than I personally care to. I’m not always quick to listen either. Learning to not go into a deep ADHD daydream when my mind isn’t being stimulated can be a real challenge for me. This verse is one that I’ve meditated on in the past. Despite having ADHD, I’ve had to embrace the challenge of learning to slow my mind down enough to engage in active listening while communicating with others.

Fellowship and respect for others requires that we listen to others; not just hear, but actually listen. James warns us to be, “… doers of the word, and not merely hearers who deceive themselves. For if any are hearers of the word and not doers, they are like those who look at themselves in a mirror; for they look at themselves and, on going away, immediately forget what they are like. But those who look into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and persevere, being not hearers who forget but doers who act – they will be blessed in their doing” (James 1:22-25).

God wants us to listen to others with the same attention and care that He gives to us. If we don’t listen and hear what others are sharing with us, we are not truly paying attention to the other person. A lack of attention is a lack of care.

I do want to clarify and point out that I don’t believe James is chastising those of us who have issues with executive functions. We are not wicked nor are we bad or dishonest. Our sometimes inability to pay full attention and remember important information is not a result of sin, it is a result of a disorder. However, as believers it is imperative that we do work towards managing and improving our listening skills to the best of our ability. God never wants or accepts excuses; He asks us to be honest about our efforts to be holy.

Mindfulness Action

Change doesn’t happen overnight, so remember to give yourself grace, patience, and love when learning to listen well.

If you have trouble listening during interactions, sermons, bible studies, or group activities; don’t forget to pray to God and ask for His help and strength in building your listening skills.

If necessary, let others know that you have ADHD; this can go a long way in avoiding misunderstandings about you.

If you need additional resources, the following linked articles might be of help to you.

Listening Skills for ADHD

Become a Better Listener

ADHD and the Spiritual Discipline of Solitude

Spiritual Disciplines and ADHD: A Series

 

 

“We read in the Gospels that, “Jesus often withdrew into lonely places and prayed” (Luke 5:16). Practicing solitude and silence is an important way that Jesus fostered his intimacy with the Father, from which he heard his voice and was empowered for his ministry. He taught this same practice to his disciples.” http://www.soulshepherding.org/2012/08/solitude-2/

The idea of a person with ADHD engaging in the spiritual practice of solitude and silence might sound like an impossibility, but it isn’t. Those of us with ADHD can remain silent and be in solitude, especially for spiritual purposes. How do I know this? When we ask for God’s help, we do things not with our own strength, instead it is in His power that we are able to accomplish what seems impossible or difficult to overcome.

I will admit that it can be difficult, but all of the spiritual disciplines can be a challenge, this is why they are called disciplines. Anything that is easy and mindless doesn’t require discipline. It will take practice to be able to sit still before the presence of God in silence, but it can be done. Approach this time with God believing that it can be done and it will happen. If you don’t include silence into your time of solitude, it will be fruitless. Silence is necessary to fully hear what God’s spirit is communicating to you.

I find that both extroverts and introverts have a difficult time with silence and solitude. Extroverts are uncomfortable being alone and introverts often mistakenly believe that being alone is the same as being in solitude. During solitude you are not “alone”, the spirit of God is with you. It is a time for you to be with God without involving any other person. Introversion is when you are refuelled while being by yourself and doesn’t involve a spiritual component. This discipline doesn’t include being alone while engaged in a variety of other activities. Solitude is a focus on God, not on yourself.

What happens during times of solitude and silence?

We silence our mouths and our minds so that our hearts can be receptive to whatever it is that the Spirit of our LORD has to say to us in that moment. We learn to manage our urge to control other people and our environment. We take that time to stop and say to God, “I will be still and I will listen with my heart so that I may be closer to you and those around me. I will be still and I will listen so that I may better serve the world around me. I will be still and I will listen so that I may live my life on a godly path with godly intentions.

Our attention deficit will make this an especially difficult discipline to partake in, but it is necessary for our spiritual growth and with the power of God in us, we can accomplish this. We can’t afford to let ADHD take us away from precious time with God. Your time of solitude and silence might only be a few minutes to begin with, but over time you will be able to dedicate as much time as you deem necessary to this important discipline.

Additional Resources:

http://www.dwillard.org/articles/artview.asp?artID=57

http://www.soulshepherding.org/2012/08/solitude-2/

 

 

ADHD: Spiritual Discipline of Confession

Spiritual Disciplines and ADHD: A Series

Part 4 of the ADHD and Spiritual Disciplines Series: Confession

Confession:Self-examination is a process whereby the Holy Spirit opens my heart to what is true about me. This is not the same thing as a neurotic shame-inducing inventory. Instead it is a way of opening myself to God within the safety of his love so I can authentically seek transformation. Confession embraces Christ’s gift of forgiveness and restoration while setting us on the path to renewal and change.” Adele Ahlberg Calhoun

It seems as if our culture has shifted towards a society of people who avoid acknowledging personal wrongs, or when they do, they justify their actions with self-esteem boosting excuses. There isn’t a human being on this earth who isn’t perfect; and knowing this should hopefully make it easier for us to admit what we have done wrong.

As Christians, God doesn’t embrace our excuses for why we have sinned, but we can have peace knowing that we are not doomed. He doesn’t accept our excuses because He is a loving God and He wants us to approach Him with integrity, honesty, and a heart of repentance. The results of approaching God with honesty is a clear conscience, a deeper relationship with Him, and the transforming wisdom that will come from God’s response to our confession.

Having ADHD means that we will often unintentionally commit wrongs against others on a regular basis; it is the negative results of having challenges with executive functioning, irregular moods, anxiety, and the increased stressed of having attention deficit. God knows the true circumstances and reasons behind the thoughts and behaviours of each person; He knows how ADHD effects individuals and can easily lead to a variety of wrongdoing. ADHD isn’t an excuse for sinning, but it certainly helps to explain why certain habits prove to be more difficult to overcome.

Confession helps those with attention deficit deal with the aftermath of wrongdoing. It allows us to be honest with God and others about what we have done and seek ways of making changes in our self. The act of confession won’t eliminate ADHD, but it can certainly help believers manage their symptoms.

True confession helps lift the shame that those with ADHD unnecessarily burden themselves with. Confession doesn’t bring shame, because God does not shame us, instead He embraces us and reminds us that we are forgiven. He blesses us with his Holy Spirit who empowers us to continue moving forward in the life long process of spiritual transformation.

REFLECTION:

If you are looking for additional resources to help you with this specific spiritual discipline, the following is a link to a Catholic resource on confession. Even if you are not Roman Catholic, there are some great prompts listed for self-examination for you to consider. http://www.netusa.org/guidetoconfession/

 

Joy of confession and forgiveness

ADHD and Sabbath Living

Spiritual Disciplines and ADHD: A Series

Part 3 of the ADHD and Spiritual Formation Series

Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns.  For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.” Exodus 20: 8-11

The root word ‘shabhath’ in Hebrew means to: desist, cease, or rest.

As Christians we honour God, our bodies, and our minds by taking meaningful and intentional time to rest. Despite Sabbath being a great way for self-renewal, it is also a commandment. It sounds unbelievable that God would have to command us to take some time to rest, but I think God knows very well that in a world of injustice, rest would sometimes become a luxury afforded to only the fortunate.

Those of us with ADHD have an additional need for rest and ceasing from non-stop activity and even more importantly non-stop thinking. With attention deficit, it can be difficult to unwind our minds; we spend much energy hyper focusing, worrying, thinking, stressing, and daydreaming. No wonder some of us are more easily fatigued than the average person.

Relax

When we don’t take time to rest, our executive functioning becomes an even greater challenge than it already is. A lack of rest from work and other activities prevents us from being able to manage some of the following executive functions: keeping track of time and finishing our work on time; keeping track of more than one thing at a time; changing course in the midst of reading, writing, or speaking; censoring inappropriate thoughts or behaviours; remembering details.

In addition to resting, regular Sabbaths are an opportunity to spend quality and quantity time with God. This time of ceasing from the mundane gives us extra time to spend on spiritual matters. Having that extra time can be used for things like personal musical worship, extended study of the bible or devotionals, going for physically non-strenuous walks or bike rides, it might even mean sleeping in and lying in bed for a few extra hours.

Then he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.” Mark 2:27

Some people are quite rigid about how they define and live a Sabbath life, but I’m not here to tell you exactly how you are to honour this commandment. Jesus warned us about taking God’s commandments to ridiculous levels. Creating appropriate ways of experiencing holy rest is going to be different for everyone. I work shift work and there is no way that I would be able to dedicate every single Sunday as a Sabbath day. I also don’t use it as a day to unplug from technology because listening to sermons online and enjoying classical music via my laptop is very relaxing for me.

Prayerfully consider when and how you will engage in holy rest. Regardless of how you choose to develop this spiritual discipline, we do so remembering that this is a time to connect with God by giving our body and mind intentional rest. By connecting with God and our self, we are then better equipped to be in community with others in our personal life and our work life.

24-6 or 24-7 ?

Sabbath Considerations:

Is your spouse and/or children supportive and respectful of your Sabbath?

What will you be doing and not doing during this time of rest?

What does holy rest mean to you? What does it look like in your life?

How are you connecting with God during this time? How are you connecting to your self during this time?

 

 

ADHD & Serving Others

Spiritual Disciplines and ADHD: A Series

Spiritual Discipline: Service

For the second discipline in this series on practicing the Spiritual Disciplines while living with ADHD, we will be looking at acts of service. Service is also known as volunteering, giving, sharing, servant hood, helping, and a variety of other words.

Serving others is a major part of any Christian community. Servant hood is what allows many churches to operate without having to have a large number of paid staff. Without volunteers, churches would be unable to provide many of the community programming that they offer, especially during the holiday seasons.

The book of Acts makes mention of different acts of sharing within the newly forming Christianity and its church communities. In his letters St. Paul places a heavy emphasis on caring for each other and lifting each other up as part of the foundation of being Christ-like and living in brotherly (and sisterly) harmony. In fact, St. Paul saw servant hood as an expression and sign of one’s love for Christ.

Do small things with love

With ADHD there can be a variety of challenges that come with having a servant’s heart. We cannot ignore these vulnerabilities and need to take into account certain factors that affect our ability to help others.

ADHD caution:

  • Over committing
  • Difficulty in saying “no” to requests for your time
  • Issues with managing time (e.g. showing up late, last minute cancelling, forgetting to show up)
  • Fatigue or irritability due to one’s medication wearing off
  • Signing up to do things that are difficult for you to focus on
  • Extra responsibilities causing you additional stress
  • Volunteer coordinators not respecting the limitations caused by you having ADHD
  • Feelings of insecurity about not being able to “do it all” or comparing your acts of service to that of others

When offering to volunteer, it is important to consider any issues your ADHD might cause. Limitations don’t mean you can’t do good deeds for others or your community, it simply means you have to take extra caution that your service does not lead to more harm than good.

It is perfectly alright to say “no”, “yes”, or “maybe another time”. You can only give what you already have. God is not sitting in heaven with a score board counting how many times you have helped others. Our Father knows our heart and is perfectly capable of telling the difference between our being selfish vs. taking time for self-care. As human beings we can only do so much on an individual basis, this is why we are each called to contribute to serving one another. Serving each other is meant to prevent burn-out and stop us from trying to carry burdens on our own.

God wants us to have enough energy so that we will be alert enough to see the needs of others and then meet them.

If you are unable to directly meet someone’s needs, be kind about it, and if you are able to direct them to someone else or a service that will be of help to them, then do so; this is still a form of helping. You might feel guilty, but in referring them to someone else who can help, you are doing them a favour. Again, God knows your heart and He knows you can’t do everything yourself.

ACTION: Pray that you will always be aware and alert to the needs of others. Pray for discernment so your kindness and resources will not be taken advantage of. Pray that you will take care of yourself so you can also provide care to others. Pray for a Christ-like heart so that you will lovingly serve others without bitterness. I pray all of these alongside you. To those of you who are out there serving with your heart and your abilities; High Five!

Do all the good you can

Verses:

Isaiah 58:7

Share your food with the hungry,
and give shelter to the homeless.
Give clothes to those who need them,
and do not hide from relatives who need your help.

Matthew 22: 37-40

Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’  This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.”

ADHD and Reading the Bible

Spiritual Disciplines and ADHD:  A Series

Over the next several weeks I will be posting a series about practicing the Spiritual Disciplines (Spiritual Formation/Spiritual Practices) for those with ADHD. During this series I will cover a variety of disciplines: Bible reading, Meditation, Solitude, Fasting, Sabbath, Service, Prayer, and Worship, and how those of us with ADHD can engage in these practices.

This week will start with the Spiritual Discipline of reading the bible.

 

BASIC DEFINITION OF A SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINE:

  • A deliberately self imposed habit that nurtures spiritual health and fosters spiritual growth leading to maturity.
  • Deliberately self imposed actions to alter existing life and thought patterns, thereby breaking the normal cycle of life and breaking the focus on the mundane to contemplate the sublime.
  • Repetitious actions driven by spiritual decisions rather than natural environmental reactions.
  • Spiritual exercises to develop “Sacred Rhythms” to engage in intentional spirituality in the pursuit of intimacy with God.
  • (Source: authenticdiscipleship.org)

Spiritual Disciplines

For those with ADHD who have trouble with focusing, sitting still, and developing consistent reading practices; developing the habit of reading or studying the bible can seem like a daunting spiritual discipline. I used to be an avid bible reader when I was working towards my Master’s degree. I loved doing the research into the history of near eastern culture. I also enjoyed finding out the Greek and Hebrew meanings of words that we often misuse in the English language. Lost in translation had a new meaning for me after I finished my courses.

Eventually my time as an active student came to an end and so did my passion for studying the bible. I’m not quite sure where my motivation went, but it was probably in the same place as my discipline. I went for a period of time where I was not interested in reading the bible. It felt as if I would develop a headache every time I looked at a bible; forget about opening it. During this time I switched to reading a variety of theological books, but eventually I accepted the fact that nothing can take the place of reading the actual bible.

To help you develop a desire and a habit of reading/studying the bible, I’ve listed a few suggestions you might want to try.

Translation Style:

There are plenty of translations of the bible. Some of the most popular are KJV, NKJV, NIV, ESV, and Living Translation. It’s important to find a translation that you enjoy reading and one that is at your level of reading. If you do not have an advanced vocabulary reading the KJV will be a challenge for you and eventually you will lose interest in reading something you can’t comprehend. Some people prefer to read The Message, this a good option for people who want to read the bible as a paraphrase rather than a translation. It is also at an easy reading level.

Others like myself prefer to have more than one translation on hand. I use the NRSV and the NASB. For reading the Proverbs, Psalms, and Ecclesiastes, I love to read these books in the KJV and NKJV version out loud during personal devotional time.

What are you Reading About?:

One way to develop an interest in reading the bible is to select a topic that is of interest to you. The bible is filled with multiple stories and each of them have a lesson for us to learn from. I’ve enjoyed reading various studies about different women featured in the bible. I’ve also enjoyed topics that relate to areas where I needed to focus on personal character development. What would you be interested in learning about?

-Women of the Bible

  •    Mary (all of them), Hagar, Leah and Rachel

-Characters from the bible:

  •    St.Paul, Saul, King David, Solomon

-Specific Topics for Spiritual Development:

  •    Conquering Fear
  •    Prayer
  •    Fruits of the Spirit
  •     Love

-You might want to read scripture that speaks to a specific season of your life:

  •    Divorce
  •    Fertility Issues
  •    Parenting
  •    Grief
  •    Depression

Keeping a Record:

Are you the type who likes to keep a running journal about your life or spiritual life? Then you would likely benefit from keeping a journal for writing your thoughts and reflections about the bible passages that you are reading. Personally I no longer enjoy journaling my bible studies and it has helped me that I’ve given up that habit for now. I like the freedom of reading the bible and then allowing what I’ve read to sink in throughout the day. If you are a journaling type of person find writing materials that suite your style: online journaling, blogging, notebook, etc.

Structured or Do Your Own Thing?:

If you are the type of person who needs to have structure, there are many bible reading plans available. You can pick them up at a Christian bookstore or find a variety on line. There are options such as, topical studies, read the bible in a year, or seasonal readings such as Lent and Advent.

If you are the type that doesn’t like structure it is important to find a less structured reading plan in order to stay on track. If you approach bible reading without any structure whatsoever, you are less likely to make reading a habit and eventually you will quit reading.  Structure is very important in managing ADHD.

Time Factor:

Everyone, and I mean everyone has time to pray and read the bible every single day. We tell ourselves we don’t have time and it is easy to believe we don’t. But think about it? When was the last time you heard someone say they don’t have time to go to the bathroom in a day, or don’t have time to eat or drink over a 24 hour period. Have you ever heard a mother say that she doesn’t have time to hold or feed her baby? Never. The fact is we make regular and consistent time for things that matter to us; having ADHD doesn’t change this.

Only you know what times are best for you to make time to read the bible. To start, it doesn’t have to be an everyday activity. If you are not used to reading the bible, you can start with a few scheduled times per week and make you way up to as many days as you need to. I don’t generally read the bible on weekends, Saturday and Sunday are the days when I catch up theological blogs, and reading.

If time management is a major weakness of yours, it would be best to start with readings that you know will only take 10-15 minutes of your time. Again, the idea is to start easy and work your way to increased times. What is most important is quality time taking in the word.

However you choose to engage in reading the bible, it will enrich your walk with God. The bible is filled with God’s promises to us. It is through the bible that we read of His love for us and His desire for us to love and care for one another. Let’s not allow ADHD prevent you from experiencing the power of the word in your life.


 

Bible Study Tools

Biblegateway.com 

Bible Study Tools Online

Bible (More than one translation)

Commentaries

Concordance

Paper (e.g. journal, diary, notebook, etc.)

Internet Sources: bible study sites, video series, online sermons

Dictionary

Lexicon

Bible Reading Plan

Bible study curriculum (e.g. Beth Moore, Kelly Minter, etc.)

Audio Bible

Smartphone Apps

Charts/Outlines/Maps

Devotional Books