I have a confession to make.
Though I have been a student of God’s word most of my life, I have never read the Bible from cover to cover; Not in my 54 years of life. Actually, maybe I did once, as a young pastor’s wife, but if I did, I nodded through most of it, and I am not sure that counts. HA! Sad isn’t it that I can be so very fond of His love letter, but not read it . . . all?
Did you know that according to a Lifeway Research, only eleven percent of Americans have read the entire Bible once, and only nine percent have read the Bible through multiple times? (Smietana, Bob. Lifeway Research: Americans are Fond of the Bible, Don’t actually read the Bible, lifewayresearch.com April 25, 2017)
At the beginning of 2019, I challenged myself to read the Scripture from front to back (while staying awake) before the end of the year. Can I tell you a secret? I accomplished my goal! As of this morning, I have read the entire Bible from cover to cover, with both eyes open. I only tell you to encourage you because it has been an amazing journey! I have fallen in love with the prize, which is knowing Christ in a deep and rewarding way. This gift of Bible reading is Him! My sweet friend, if I can complete this goal, you can too!
Here are a few things that helped me finish:
Choose a Bible that is easy to understand. I read the ESV, but the New Living Translation is a clean, easy read as well. Unless you are smarter than me, save the King James for another day.
Get a chronological Bible. The storyline is more natural to grasp in a chronological format over the traditional layout.
Purchase a Bible with white space on the side of each page. Seriously! Use the area to write personal thoughts or sermon notes. This will make the Bible come alive. Sometimes, I write notes and draw a picture, depending on how I am feeling that morning.
Set a routine time to read every day. If you miss a day, jump back in as soon as you can. Read a few extra pages when time allows. Find a spot for your new routine. I love to be outdoors, so I read on my front porch or looking outdoors from a kitchen window. Any place will do, but make it a spot you want to retreat to for quiet and calm moments with the Creator.
Just don’t give up! Instead:
Soak it in.
Read and re-read.
Grab a commentary.
Spend time in un-rushed moments with the Book.
Read the love-letter daily.
Then do it again.
Seek. Learn. Grow.
Search for the lover of your soul.
Meet the author.
And. You. Will. Have. Found. The. Prize. “I am the way, the truth and the life.” John 14:6 (NIV)
“Open my eyes, that I may behold the wondrous things out of your law.” Psalms 119:18
Girrrrl, you gotta read your Bible. It is so very worth it!