I know people with pristine Bibles. I am not one of them. I am an inveterate Bible wrecker and it makes the Word of God come alive for me. Worse yet for all you pristine Bible lovers, I plan on never mending my ways.
Of course I bean with underlining my favorite passages as a child. I then proceeded on to color coding. I chose word topics and using colored pencils and highlighters, colored verses with or about those words. That very soon led to personal indexing.
Threading ranks as my second favorite form of Bible wrecking. I find a topic of study, and cross reference one verse to the next and so on throughout the Book. I found I needed to add the starting and closing verses to the Bible’s concordance in the back to be sure I could find it at a moment’s notice. Indexing is key for me, because nothing is more frustrating than knowing I have a scripture somewhere in a book of 66 books. I started running out of space for indexing, and had to get creative.
Then I started adding quotes and reference material by way of inserts. I began with typing them onto thin tracing paper, but with the advent of computers, quickly resorted to using regular copier papaer. I learned the hard way not to use rubber cement as a medium for insertion. It eventually dries out and the insert becomes a nuisance. Worse, it discolors the margin as it dries. I now favor a high quality paper crafting glue.
I finally starting adding Washi tape to highlight books since my Bible had no tabs. Word of warning: Don’t wait to do this. It’s hard to cover over notes in the margin. Since my Bible is starting to fall apart, my next new Bible will have Washi tape inserted at the start.
I do enjoy Bible journaling and art journaling, but I use other versions for that pleasure. When Alma died I found it hard to hold thoughts in my head, and focusing on short phrases kept me in the Word. I had a wide-margin version of the Bible I already used for that form of meditation and worship, and focused on that medium of study. I am not an artist, but the whole point is that you don’t have to be. It’s a form of personal meditation, and I am chagrined to share my simple artwork…but it illustrates the point. Just do it and stop worrying about perfection.
Being a Bible wrecker offers me a creative outlet and a way to express what the Word means to me. It also prepares me for sharing intentionally at a moment’s notice. I hope it makes me a warrior for the Word, not to use it as a weapon, but as a way of zealously defending the King. Last but not least, it seasons my life with all the benefits of a life with Christ. Peace, joy, and strength keep me going through this season of loss and change. The Rock and His Word never fail. Yup. I plan on being a Bible wrecker ’till the day I die. #noregrets