The closing of this week brings on a need for celebration. Why? I finished reading the book of Psalms! You know the book in the middle of the bible, that Psalms. Okay, so I’ve read that book many times before, why is this time different?
I’m so glad you asked. J
Because… now I’m more than half way done with reading the whole bible.
See told you: Celebration!
Several weeks ago a friend asked if I wanted to join her in reading through the bible, something she’d never done before. I read her text and literally I groaned. Why, because she was going to do it in 90days! I have read through the bible several times, but I had always done the yearly plan. I knew how much reading would have to be done to complete it in that short time frame. So I asked her what the plan of attack was. She said she would be using the schedule provided by haventoday.org.
Then I groaned again, it was a plan to read straight through. Personally, I like the ones that give me a little bit of Old and New with sprinkles of Psalms and Proverbs per day. The thought of reading Leviticus straight through made my eyes want to glaze over. I had to repeat to myself: 2 Timothy 3:16 (NIV) “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness.”
So I prayed, got the go ahead, and I told her I would do it with her.
Well on Sunday, my Pastor stated that only 40% of churchgoers actually read their bible outside of church. Wishful thinking that he was wrong, I looked it up. According to LifeWay Research 36% read their bible outside of church…wait for it…and a gut retching 19% read it every day. You can find this article here: http://www.christiantoday.com/article/most.churchgoers.do.not.read.bible.daily.survey/30620.htmRemember this was a survey taken of churchgoers, not of non-Christians.
In case you’re not the best at math, 19 and 36 are NOT numbers to be proud of!
How can we stand up for our Christian beliefs if we aren’t reading the bible and learning what our beliefs actually are?
So what’s stopping us?
I would say let’s get off our booties and do it. But it’s more likely we need to make time to: stop, sit, and open the Bible.
Pray first. Always pray before you start reading. Ask God to open His words to you. Trust me, inside that book is some confusing stuff.
If you are doing the 90day challenge, I recommend reading in NLT or NIV. Have paper, pens, and highlighters handy. You will be reading about 15 chapters a day and it will take close to an hour to do it, which doesn’t leave a lot of time for deep thinking. This is where I highlight things I like, things I forgot, and things I don’t understand. Then I make a note in my notebook to go back and study those scriptures after these crazy 90days.
Remember you don’t have to read it all at once. Life is busy. So read a few chapters at a time. Read while you’re stirring dinner, lunch at the office, etc. Just bring your bible with you when you leave the house or put a bible app on your phone, ipod, or kindle.
More than likely at one point or another, you will get behind. That’s okay, just keep reading. Saturdays are hard for me to finish. I usually have to read extra on Sunday and Monday to catch back up. Just keep on going.
If this challenge sounds like something you want to do, than great! Do it. BUT! If you commit this to God, you need to follow through.
Trust me God is big on the whole commitment thing!!!
Don’t’ trap yourself by making a rash promise to God and only later counting the cost.
Proverbs 20:25 nlt
Do I recommend the 90day challenge? Honestly, not to most people. It’s rough! But I do know you can do it!
Will I be doing the 90day challenge again after I finish? Hopefully…that’s a negative. I’m much more of an in-depth study on an individual book at a time kind of girl, but I’m glad I did do it.(Check out precept.org for wonderful resources on in-depth bible studies.)
No matter if you focus on one book at a time, or read it in a year or a month, the point is to read the Bible. Now let’s change that awful 19 number together! Shall we...