The following interview is part of the Dwelling Richly series, an interview series focused on studying the Bible.
To read more interviews from this series and view all contributors, visit the Dwelling Richly page here.
“Time with Jesus is simply something I must have . . . or I will be useless.”
I have been so encouraged by this interview with Melissa Kruger. If you’re a Mama to little ones, I know you’ll get a blessing from reading how and why she made time to spend with God when her children were young. Melissa is a women’s ministry coordinator and writer based out of Charlotte, North Carolina. She has authored two books (you can check out her links at the end!) and writes regularly at Wit’s End.
For me, the best way to cultivate a desire to be in the Word is to be in it every day…to read it, meditate on it, be surprised by it, confused by it, comforted by it, amazed by it.
That doesn’t mean that I always leave my time in the Word with some great emotional high or amazing insight. There are many days of ho-hum reading when nothing seems to make an impact. However, the more I read, the more days I find treasure and the more opportunities I have to understand the beautiful way all the stories form one larger story. It’s impossible to experience the wonder, the delight, the joy, the depth without time spent reading the Bible.
I always have my journal for prayer and a cup of tea beside me.
Kay Arthur’s “Lord” and “Precept” series taught me how to study Scripture. She uses an inductive approach: Observation, Interpretation, Application. All through high school and college I used her studies. Having someone else ask me those type of questions and lead me through a passage taught me how to study God’s Word for myself. It’s why I love writing studies for other women—I want to share with others what someone shared with me.
When my children were little, my time with the Lord was like a drink of refreshment in the midst of long days full of constant needs. Since morning times were busy (and little ones seem to wake at different times each day, so it’s hard to get up before them), I used my children’s nap time for studying God’s word and prayer. The hardest part was leaving the mess—the dishes that need to be cleaned, the toys scattered everywhere, the emails that need to be returned—and sitting down with my Bible and journal. Once I made the decision to sit, I was so glad to be there. But, it took effort to make myself be still!
That decision each day was rooted firmly is this belief: the greatest way I love my children is to first love Jesus. That love is fostered by spending time in his Word and in prayer. I never viewed it as “selfish” or “me time”, any more than I view eating or drinking as “me time.” Time with Jesus is simply something I must have (like food and water) or I will be dry and brittle, useless for every role God has called me to. Believing time with the Lord is the most important thing allowed me to carve out space to have that time with him each day.
When our children were little, we read them Bible stories each night and used songs to help them memorize Scripture. We wanted God’s Word to be a part of their daily life. As they entered school, we began having family devotions in the morning at breakfast.
However, I believe the most important way we teach our children to love God’s Word is to love it ourselves. My 17-year old daughter just wrote me a long letter (the kind you treasure as a mom) and in it she reflected, “You also are such a fierce and loyal follower of the Lord, which so encourages me in my own faith. Seeing you write in your journal and pray gives me encouragement to be faithful in my walk with Him.”
Her words made me realize how much children learn from our affections and daily habits—these make an impression and teach just as much as our words and advice.
What is one Scripture passage the Lord has especially impressed on your heart and why?
Isaiah 55 is a passage that speaks to and directs what I hope my life will always reflect. It begins with an invitation to thirsty: “Come!” and ends with the expectation: “Go!” I hope my life will always be about both about coming to the Lord—finding my satisfaction and purpose in him—and then going out with his Word and sharing it with others. It’s a passage that keeps me grounded in what is most important in the Christian life: knowing God and sharing him with others.
Melissa Kruger serves as women’s ministry coordinator at Uptown Church (PCA) in Charlotte, North Carolina, and is the author of The Envy of Eve: Finding Contentment in a Covetous World(Christian Focus, 2012) and Walking with God in the Season of Motherhood (Waterbrook/
For more encouragement from Christian women who prioritize Bible study, check out all the Dwelling Richly interviews!