How to Stop Getting So Distracted During Prayer and Bible Study

🌺  Written by Brittany Ann

 How to Stop Getting So Distracted During Prayer and Bible Study

Do you constantly find yourself distracted during prayer and Bible study?

If so, it’s not just you.

In fact, when I was researching my book, Fall in Love with God’s Word: Practical Strategies for Busy Women, distractions were one of the TOP seven reasons why Christian women don’t read their Bibles as often as they’d like.

(You can find the whole list of reasons Christian women don’t read their Bibles consistently here.)

 

Whether it’s external distractions (like the phone ringing, the kids making messes, or the dog barking to go outside) or internal distractions (like your mind wandering), distractions during prayer and Bible study can be a seriously pesky obstacle for many Christians’ spiritual growth.

The good news? There are plenty of things you can do to make stop getting so distracted during prayer and Bible study, so you can continue to grow your faith.

That’s why, in this post we’re answering the question: “What does the bible say about distractions?” with a handful of Scriptures on distractions that are definitely worth studying.

Then, I’m sharing seven techniques that work great for me… Maybe one of them will help you too?

 

*This post contains affiliate links, which means if you make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no additional cost to you. This helps cover the many costs of running this site and allows me to help provide for my growing family. Thank you!

 

Learning How to Read the Bible Can Be Fun and Enjoyable!

 

Fall in Love with God's Word Book Plus WorkbookBy the way, one of the biggest reasons you find yourself distracted during Bible reading may be that you don’t actually enjoy reading your Bible enough.

Reading your Bible doesn’t have to be boring and routine. Why not make it FUN, meaningful, enjoyable, and interesting??

If you struggle to focus while reading your Bible because you feel like it’s boring or you aren’t getting a lot out of it, I’d love to invite you to check out my brand new book: Fall in Love with God’s Word: Practical Strategies for Busy Women! 

Practical, encouraging, and full of biblical truth, Fall in Love with God’s Word has everything you need to learn how to:

  • Overcome 7 common obstacles preventing you from spending time in Scripture
  • Discover the personalized Bible-reading routine that works for YOU
  • Learn 15 easy ways to make reading the Bible more meaningful and enjoyable
  • Use Scripture to conquer sin, false beliefs, and negative thought patterns
  • Experience fresh spiritual growth and passion for God’s Word.

Please visit Amazon.com or your local bookstore to learn more and grab your copy of Fall in Love with God’s Word (and its companion workbook) today!

 

Learn More Pink Button

 

 

What Does the Bible Say About Distractions?

 

Unfortunately, the Bible doesn’t use the word “distractions” or “distracted” very often, and the Scriptures on distractions (in general) we do find don’t really provide much help for actually overcoming these distractions.

Here are Scriptures on distractions that include the actual word (distracted, distractions):

 

“But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!””  –Luke 10:40 NIV

 

“Pharaoh replied, “Moses and Aaron, why are you distracting the people from their tasks? Get back to work!” –Exodus 5:4 NLT

 

“I am saying this for your own good, not to restrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord.” –1 Corinthians 7:35 NIV

 

Thankfully, if we expand our search to include Scriptures on distractions that don’t include the actual word (distracted, distraction), we can find a better answer to our question: “What does the Bible say about distractions?”

Here’s what I found:

 

“Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you.” –Proverbs 4:25

 

“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” –1 Corinthians 10:13

 

“Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” –Colossians 3:1-2

 

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” –Hebrews 12:1-2

 

“Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” –1 Peter 5:8

 

Now, these Scriptures on distractions are NOT meant to make you feel guilt or shame if you struggle to maintain focus. We ALL get distracted sometimes–myself very much included!

Rather, they are good reminders that we should aim to keep our focus where it matters, rather than getting distracted by earthly cares and worries that keep us from falling in love with God’s Word.

 

If you struggle with constant internal distractions, you may wish to write out one or more of these Scriptures on distractions so you can put the verse where you can see it often.

Otherwise, here are 7 helpful ways to stop getting so distracted during prayer and Bible study.

 

How to Stop Getting So Distracted During Prayer and Bible Study

 

1. Choose the Right Time and Place

 

Are you trying to spend time with God right in the middle of your busy day (when your mind is going a million miles per hour) or last thing at night (when you’re tired and likely to fall asleep)?

If so, something as simple as choosing a different time and place can really make a huge difference – whether you’re learning how to read the Bible for the first time or you’re ready to dive deep and learn how to study the Bible for yourself.

 

For example, you could choose to read your Bible:

  • First thing in the morning, before your children are awake
  • In the car (Listen to an audio Bible or show up to work 5 minutes early)
  • At the gym (Again, audio Bible to the rescue)
  • On your lunch break
  • While the kids are napping/having quiet time/watching cartoons
  • While your kids are at sports practice

It doesn’t matter when – as long as it’s a time that works well for you that you can stick to consistently enough to read the Bible daily and make it a habit.

 

Quiet Time Planning GuideNeed help creating the perfect quiet time for you? Grab your Quiet Time Planning Guide!

This super simple guide will help you:

  • Determine what the ideal quiet time looks like for you
  • Stay focused during your quiet times
  • Hold yourself accountable
  • Experience real spiritual growth

And it’s free!

Just let me know where to send it:

2. Have the Right Materials on Hand

 

Once you’ve used the Quiet Time Planning Guide to choose the perfect time and place, the next step is to show up prepared.

Now, it’s true that you don’t really need any special materials to pray and read your Bible (other than a Bible, of course), but having some additional things on hand can be REALLY helpful.

For example:

 

  • A Notepad and Pen: Constantly being interrupted by thoughts of your to-do list or daily activities you need to remember? Simply jot them down and go back to what you were doing.

 

  • A Good Study Bible in an Easier Translation: The New Living Translation (NLT) is a good one to start with. And The Message is also a very easy read as well, although it is a paraphrase, so it’s not as close to the original translation. Personally, I typically read the New International Version (NIV).

 

 

  • A Prayer List: Even something as simple as writing out the people or situations you’d like to pray for in a list can be tremendously helpful for staying on track. Or go through these lists of prayers for your children or prayers for your husband if you need additional ideas.

 

 

Fall in Love with God's Word book plus workbook on transparent background

 

And of course, I’d also love to encourage you to check out my book, Fall in Love with God’s Word: Practical Strategies for Busy Women, if you struggle to stay focused or motivated during prayer and Bible study.

It has a TON of really practical tips and encouragement you can use to really get the most out of your time in God’s Word.

Plus, there’s even a companion workbook full of fill-in-the-blank exercises, checklists, and beautiful printables–all designed to help you focus and take action on everything you’re reading and learning.

Highly recommend!!

3. Write it Out

 

Your prayer list and list of distractions aren’t the only things it can be helpful to write down either. You may also consider Bible Journaling, writing out your prayers in a prayer journal, or writing out notes by hand as you read your Bible.

Not only do these two simple actions make staying focused during prayer and Bible study that much easier, but it’s always fun to look back later and see all the ways you’ve grown, all the things you’ve learned and all the prayers God has answered.

Plus, it’s a good excuse to buy a cute little prayer and Bible study notebook if you don’t have a good one lying around already.

 

4. Grab a Friend

 

Everything’s better with a friend — prayer and Bible study included!

If you constantly find yourself distracted during prayer and Bible study, why not grab a friend to pray and read with? You can encourage each other, inspire each other, challenge each other, and help keep each other on track and focused.

Share your knowledge, your insights and all the ways you feel God speaking to you and working in your life. Ask questions and get honest feedback. Not only will it help you get more involved in the text,  but it will grow your friendship too.

I’d definitely recommend this to anyone who is struggling to read the Bible consistently, who could use a little outside help.

 

*Related: 10 Awesome Websites for Christian Women (You’ll Love These!)

 

5. Examine the Distractions

 

If your distractions are simply run-of-the-mill annoyances caused by tiredness or boredom, the four suggestions above should take care of the problem.

But what if they don’t?

In that case, it might be worth it to stop what you’re doing and examine the distractions to see if there is something you need to learn from them.

  • Is God putting something or someone on your heart that you need to pray for?
  • Is there something you’re worrying about that you need to fully surrender to God?
  • Is there a situation in your life right now that you need to get taken care of and stop procrastinating on?
  • Have you become so addicted to busyness that you’re now unable to slow down?

If the problem isn’t just a quick, fleeting distraction but an actual life problem, you will need to set aside some time to actually deal with the problem if you want it to stop coming back.

 

6. Look for Unconfessed Sin in Your Life

 

Okay, hard question time:

Is there anything that God has asked you to do that you’re refusing to obey Him in? If so, this may be the cause of your distractions.

 

Think about it this way: The Bible isn’t just a bunch of lifeless words on a page. It’s actually the medium through which God speaks to us.

And if you are refusing to listen to God — well, why would He keep talking? 

The result? The Bible doesn’t make sense. It doesn’t “come to life.” It grows dull, lifeless, boring…. and we can’t keep our focus.

 

The same goes with prayer:

Are you actually having a conversation with God? Or simply talking to yourself out loud?

And if you’re just rambling out loud, not really expecting an answer and not willing to listen and obey what you may hear…. well, is it any surprise then that you’re distracted?

 

7. Check Your Expectations

 

And lastly, if you’ve gone through all of the above and you’re still having trouble staying focused while praying and reading your Bible, you may simply need to double check your expectations.

There are no laws or guidelines that say that you MUST read your Bible or pray for a certain amount of time for it to count. And certain seasons of life are going to be more difficult to focus in than others — that’s not a bad thing, that’s just life.

Think about the conversations you have with your husband and children. Do you ONLY talk to them when all of you have an uninterrupted 30 minutes to set aside? Or do you also value keeping touch in the brief day-to-day moments as well?

It’s okay to have short quiet times! It’s okay to want to enjoy reading the Bible as well — not just plow your way through it. You have to find something that works with you and your real life, or you’re not going to be able to stick with it.

I’d say a good mix of longer times and shorter, more interrupted times, is TOTALLY normal — especially if you’re in one of those seasons of life.

 

Ready to Fall in Love with God’s Word?

 

Fall in Love with God's Word Book Plus WorkbookReading your Bible doesn’t have to be boring and routine. Why not make it FUN, meaningful, enjoyable, and interesting??

If you struggle to focus while reading your Bible because you feel like it’s boring or you aren’t getting a lot out of it, I’d love to invite you to check out my brand new book: Fall in Love with God’s Word: Practical Strategies for Busy Women! 

Practical, encouraging, and full of biblical truth, Fall in Love with God’s Word has everything you need to learn how to:

  • Overcome 7 common obstacles preventing you from spending time in Scripture
  • Discover the personalized Bible-reading routine that works for YOU
  • Learn 15 easy ways to make reading the Bible more meaningful and enjoyable
  • Use Scripture to conquer sin, false beliefs, and negative thought patterns
  • Experience fresh spiritual growth and passion for God’s Word.

Please visit Amazon.com or your local bookstore to learn more and grab your copy of Fall in Love with God’s Word (and its companion workbook) today!

 

Learn More Pink Button

 

 

Additional Bible Study Resources

 

Here at Equipping Godly Women, I have a TON of resources to help you learn how to read the Bible more effectively.

Here are a few additional posts you may enjoy:

 

How to Read the Bible (Easy Instructions for Beginners!)

How to Read the Bible Daily (And Make it a Habit)

Do You Truly Enjoy Reading the Bible? You Can!

How to Study the Bible for Yourself (Easy Beginner Method)

How to Stop Getting So Distracted During Prayer and Bible Study

Struggling to Read the Bible Consistently? Here are 7 Reasons Why

Five Bible Myths to Avoid

Create Your Own Bible Study Basket

10 Best Bible Studies for Women to Help You Grow in Faith

What to Look for In a Women’s Bible Study

7 Best Bible Study Apps for Christian Women — All Free!

 

Do you ever find yourself distracted during prayer and Bible study? What do you do to stay on track?

 

 

About the author

Brittany Ann is an author, speaker, and founder of EquippingGodlyWomen.com, a popular Christian-living website dedicated to helping women be “all in” in faith and family.

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  1. I love the idea of examining the distraction to see if I can learn something from it. I’m often super distracted, I’m going to try this next time. Thanks!

  2. Am so glad I came across Equipping Godly Women. I been so distracted with work and other things lately but thank God for the tips shared, I believe that from now, I do better in studying the word. God bless you and increase your grace.

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