Last year, we shared some links for a Christmas shopping list, and many of you took advantage of some of the ideas. [If you want to see that list, here’s the link.]
This year, instead of tons of different products, we thought we’d give you one idea that you can build in your own way. This is a great idea for all those holiday parties or for that one hard-to-buy-for person on your list, because it is flexible and something that is actually important.
It is a Bible Study Basket!
The idea behind this gift is obvious: it is a collection of items that helps someone with their Bible study. It is all those “little” things that someone never seems to have on hand right when they need them, all in one place.
Of course, this gift assumes the person already has a Bible they like to use for their own personal study. In case they don’t, however, here are 4 that might be a great gift to help them get started with their own Bible study.
The MacArthur Study Bible (New King James Version). [Note: We do not endorse every study note in this study Bible, but it is good overall.]
…and the ultimate, if you have a lot of money to spend: New American Standard Bible Wide-Margin Reference Bible (goatskin cover)
Now that we know the person has a nice Bible to take notes in, let’s start building the basket! Here are some things to include in the gift for the Bible student on your list:
1. A Companion Book. We suggest one of the following two options, depending on your budget.
Grasping God’s Word: A Hands-On Approach to Reading, Interpreting, and Applying the Bible by Scott Duvall ($28.90). We have not read every word of this book, but it is a great tool to helping you work through serious Bible study without being so technical that it will bore the reader.
A Study Guide to Greater Bible Knowledge by Wayne Jackson. The link provided is just to show you the book. Likely, you can find it in a bookstore less expensively by calling around. I know, for example, that Gospel Advocate keeps it in stock most of the time. This is a wonderful little book that helps someone get started with how to study the Bible.
2. Two kinds of pens. Serious Bible students are crazy about selecting a type of pen or marker. Honestly, I have never tried tons of kinds, but I have found the ones that follow to be the best of those I have used, and several articles and videos online agree. These are a must-add to the basket.
Pigma Micron Pens. These archive-level pens have a very small tip and almost never bleed through the page. I love them, and use them for a lot more than just marking in my Bible. Depending on your budget, mix and match these different packs:
6-color pack ($13.12)
An extra black pen ($5.83)
Crayola Twistables. No, I’m not kidding! Highlighting is a staple of Bible study for a lot of people, but regular highlighters bleed through the pages terribly. These crayon sticks rarely bleed through and, personally, I like the color more than a regular highlighter, which is too bright. Admittedly, I have only tested these, but I like the results. If your Bible student is a fan of highlighting, they will love these! Pick up at least one pack, and depending your budget, you may want to add two or three packs.
Crayola Twistables, 18-pack ($5.69)
3. Straight edge. For those who like to make sure their notes and underlines are perfectly straight, an edge is really helpful. Again, we offer two options, based on your price range.
Helix Stainless Steel 6-inch ruler ($6.38). This may seem a bit pricey for a ruler, but the metal ruler will stay in place as you work better than lightweight plastic.
Oxford Half-Sized Index Cards ($1.79). These 3 inch x 2 1/2 inch cards serve a dual purpose. They help keep a straight edge for underlining or writing, and they serve as notecards for those who want to use them for extra notes or memorizing verses. The price above is for a pack of 200 cards.
4. A bag to put it all in. Here is where you can save even more money. Instead of buying an actual basket to put all these things in (that may or may not get used again in the future), why not get your Bible student a nice bag to put their Bible study material in, and give the gift in the bag! Obviously, this is an optional part of the gift, but it might make a nice touch for someone on your shopping list.
Mead Five-Star Stand and Store Pencil Pouch ($9.78). This bag is small, but the best part about it is that it stands on its own while someone is using it, so the Bible student can see all his or her pens, rulers, etc. at a glance without cluttering up the workspace. It also makes studying when a big workspace is not available much easier, since everything is together.
So, there you have it. A customizable gift that will actually be helpful. Hope you enjoy this little idea, but more than that, we hope the gift of Bible study helps someone you know and love prepare for eternity!
QUESTION: What did we forget? Put your suggestions for items to include in a Bible study basket in the comments below!
Photo background credit: Mark Grapenater on Creative Commons