First off, I feel like I need to apologize for not being around much in the last couple weeks. Somehow I’m sure you understand, but I’ve not been around these parts nearly as much as I would like to be. Our international travel, summer activities with the boys and ministry obligations have kept me far busier than I ever expected these months to be. (In the springtime, I remember thinking how care-free I expected the summer to be.) In any case, the time change between Sydney and the US kept me from being prompt on my blog posts to you last week.
How grateful I am for Rachel! She always holds down the fort! Aren’t we all so blessed by her!
So, anyway, my 16-hour flights to and from Sydney gave me plenty of time to catch up on a few things – not the least of which was sleep! But I also got to get back on track with my Bible reading. Maybe you are aware that I’ve been reading the Bible through in a year. In fact, many of you have joined me on this endeavor. It is a new venture for me. It’s the very first time that I’ve ever done it and I have been shocked by the amount of verses and insights I have never seen before. On many occasions I could have sworn that God put something in the Bible the night before I read it. When in the world did that get in there?
That’s what would run across my mind every time I saw something new. (Which was often).
But admittedly, “catch-up” is indeed what I needed to do on my flight across the globe. While I have been diligent in following the reading plan, there is still a lot to digest and I’ve been having trouble on occasion. (I hope it’s not just me.) The plan I am following requires you to read four different passages each day and some of them contain 1-2 chapters. So, in one sitting, you are required to read 5-8 chapters. For me, this has proven a challenge for several reasons. First, I like to stop and ponder. When I run across a verse or phrase that intrigues me, I enjoy digging deeper and pondering the implications for my life. Digesting this much text every day doesn’t allow ample time for that. Second, if I miss a few days due to “life” (I’m telling on myself here J), catching up is unbelievably difficult. If I miss 2-3 days, I may have to read nearly 15 chapters or more from different sections of the Bible in order to get back on track. Finding 2-3 hours in a day to do this can be difficult.
In any case, I have been enlightened by what I’ve read and seen. (And I am determined to finish now that I’ve made it to the second half of the year.) I would encourage every believer to do this at some point in their lives. Seeing the fulness and overarching theme of the redemption story is intriguing and a blessing. It will revolutionize any life.
Yet, even with the wonderful way this reading plan has opened my eyes more fully to God’s work, I still find myself drawn to my normal way of devotion – taking 1 to 2 verses at a time and pondering them for a while – a full day or even two – before moving forward.
Maybe the next time I take on a task like this, I’ll choose a plan that lets you read through one of the testaments in a year instead of the whole Bible. Or, when I read through all 66 books again, I’ll do it in another season of life when my children are not so small and quite so needy. Hmmm. . . somehow I feel like I still be busy, just like you most probably are!
In the end, I guess being disciplined and determined is required, whether you are reading 1 verse or 25, no matter what season of life you are in.
What about you? Are you reading the Bible through in a year right now, or have you done it before? How did you find that it suited you?