A lot of people set out in January to read through the Bible. I have been doing it for years. I wanted to share a couple of things that I learned over the years that really helped me establish this discipline.
- Establish the Time and Place - For me it is in the morning. I set my alarm (I was a little late yesterday thanks to the UGA game) for 5am and I set a backup alarm just in case I turn off the alarm and go back to sleep. I get up and walk to the couch with my Bible and my journal to begin the day.
- Find the Right Plan - I think the YouVersion App is great. There are a ton of reading plans at our disposal. The reading plans that take you through the year just never worked out for me. I would start them and it would be a struggle to stay on task by March. Five or six years ago I was introduced to the Moravian Daily Texts (you can subscribe here). The plan works on a 2 year cycle. I read through the OT and NT every 2 years and I read through the Psalms every year. There are 100s of reading plans, take a look around. BUT REMEMBER...
- This is a Discipline - I realized after getting married and having children that if I was going to be intentional in my time alone with God, i couldn't just squeeze it in when I had some free time. I had to discipline myself to do it at a specific time. There were days that I didn't want to do it, but I sat down and now it has become a predictable pattern of my life.
I want to encourage you to spend time in the Word and prayer everyday. This is a crucial discipline for a follower of Jesus. At the same time, remember GRACE! God is not more in love with you when you read your Bible everyday and looking to smack you in the back of the head when you miss a day. That's not the heart of the Father. If you miss a day, you miss a day. It's not about the checkmark on a spiritual to-do list, but a relationship with the God of the Universe. If you will take the time to DISCIPLINE yourself in this area, I promise over time it will become a DELIGHT.