As you make a commitment to read through your bible in a year, there will always be some hurdles that will pop up. In order to accomplish anything that spans a year in time, you will need a few bits of help along the way.
I’ll share a few tips that will help you stay on it.
- Put your bible reading plan on your digital calendar or your actual physical calendar.
It’s amazing how simply scheduling time for something makes us become aware of it. So, put it on whatever calendar tool you use. The key is whatever tool you actually use. At our house, we use Apple calendar, and each day’s Bible reading passages “ding” on everyone’s devices at 6 AM. Not everyone gets up and is reading then, but it “dings” and sits there as a reminder that there is a “task” to do.
Don’t let putting bible reading as a “task” in the day bother you. There is nothing wrong with doing tasks. Life never happens without tasks, and that includes the life of bible reading. You need to make it a daily necessary task.
- Choose a consistent time every day.
Nothing builds good habits like doing something at a consistent time. Our brains are wired to build neuro pathways to thoughts and emotions we consistently have. When we repeat something consistently over time, we build a habit. You experience this if you eat at a certain time daily and you are reminded if busy that your body wants some food because it starts reminding you that it’s “time”. Why? You’ve constructed a habit and your brain knows it, and it’s God’s alarm clock in your body reminding you that it is time. It’s the same with Bible reading. If you do it at the same time daily, you will build a good and positive habit.
Spiritual habits are good not “unspiritual”. We breathe habitually, we eat habitually, we go potty habitually, we do hundreds of good things by habit. I would argue that a deeply ingrained spiritual habit is THE way we see sustained spiritual growth in most things. That’s not in any way denying the supernatural work of God. I would argue that God does supernatural things when we come after him with consistency. Consider Jeremiah 29:13.
Jeremiah 29:13 (ESV) You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.
- Choose a consistent place if you can.
If possible, choose a consistent place that is your place for getting quiet and still. Sometimes you may be traveling and will have to clearly read from another location. That is perfectly fine.
Choosing a place lets you set a routine just the way you like it, and it facilitates your ability to calm, focus, and get into your pace of reading.
Sometimes that place may be a place that is not completely quiet, and that is completely ok. You know how you need to focus, just find that place, and make it consistent if you can.
- Choose a consistent translation.
Choose a translation that you like. For the discipline of Bible reading, choose a translation rather than a paraphrase, because you want to get to the heart of things without going through too many layers of interpretation. Paraphrases are fine for certain things, but not for the consistency of Bible reading. Nothing wrong with paraphrases for multiple purposes, but for daily Bible reading, you should stick to a translation that helps you understand what the inspired author is saying from God without too many other disciplines to apply. Keep it simple.
- Use a plan that gets you through the whole bible in one year.
It’s vital to have a plan that works you through the whole bible in one year. Most plans accomplish this, and there are many. I’ll link a post I wrote with my plan attached.
It’s nice to be reading the same plan with some others because you can discuss what you read that day through texts, calls, and other vehicles of communication. It’s a joy to share insights the Lord gives as you read his word with your friends and family.
You need a plan. If you don’t have a plan, you can’t adjust when life comes at you. There will be days you miss due to circumstances beyond your control. With a plan, you can measure what you need to do to catch up and move forward. Without a plan, it becomes easier to just quit.
There you have it. A short little list of “things” to help you move on with your Bible reading for 2021.
Here’s a post I wrote to help you launch and have my plan attached: