Published: 5 years ago

Plan the Read, Read the Plan

If you’ve been scouring the innernets over the last few days, there’s a few common themes running a’through it: resolutions, year-end reviews, and Bible reading plans.

This won’t be a post about resolutions, and I covered year-end reviews last week. So option #3 is to jump on the Bible reading plan bandwagon. Yep, it’s been covered on the innernets, but you’re still waffling. And you shouldn’t waffle, especially with your resolution to lose your gut.

Here’s the skinny: you oughta. You oughta read your Bible. Interact with your Bible. Let the Holy Spirit nudge and push and sometimes break you through your Bible.

But often, we won’t read it if we don’t have a plan. Sometimes we need a checklist to know where we’re heading and where we’ve been. If you’re looking for a few good plans, check out the series of posts that my friend Matt Pearson put up last week. You can find ’em here, here, here, here, and here. YouVersion.com also has a comprehensive list of reading plans covering many different ways to read scripture.

If you’ve never had a daily reading plan, here are a few suggestions to help you get started:

  1. Pick a plan. (Haven’t you been paying attention? Geez.)
  2. Pick a time. For me, it’s best to wake up early and spend time with God before the house gets crazy. Maybe you don’t feel spiritual before noon. Maybe not before 6 PM. But pick one and stay consistent.
  3. Don’t bite off more than you can chew. Some will disagree with me, but I’d advise that if you’ve never read the Bible regularly, don’t start by trying to read the Bible through. You’ll get to the dreaded Levitical February slump and be overwhelmed with rules about mold in houses.
  4. Mix it up. Consider picking a plan that pulls from both the Old and New Testaments.
  5. Supplement. Utilize devotional materials by authors like Paul Tripp (A Shelter in the Time of Storm and Whiter Than Snow are excellent choices), John Piper (Pierced by the Word, among others), Gary Thomas (try Sacred Pathways or his new Simply Sacred), and many more. But beware of letting bonus material overtake your main reading. Spend the majority of your time working your way through God’s word.

So what about you? What are the reading plans you’ve used successfully? What are you using this year? I’d love to hear about ’em. Comment below…

3 Comments.
  1. Connie Pearson says:

    I can SO relate to the “Levitical February slump.” Ha! I confess to skimming a lot of that each time. I have used the One-Year Bible and the Two-Year Bible successfully. Somehow, the Chronological Bible messed with my 61-year-old, so-Southern-Baptist-it’s-pitiful brain, so I don’t recommend it. This year I’m going with “Read Through the Bible Program for Shirkers and Slackers.” It’s seems to provide less guilt and more grace for folks like me.

  2. Amanda says:

    I usually don’t get past Feb or March. I’m intrigued by Connie’s post. I looked up the Read through the Bible Program for Shirkers and Slackers. This one seems to have been written with me in mind so I’ve printed it out and decided to give it a try. I like the checklist without dates so when I shirk and slack I don’t feel so overwhelmed about catching up – I’ll just re-focus, pick up with whatever day of the week it is and keep going. Thanks for the plan, Connie. 🙂

  3. This will be my 15th year reading through the Bible. I’ve done “start to finish,” OT/NT, and my favorite, the M’Cheyne Plan which I’ve used the last three or more years. So this year I thought I’d try something different and I’m on the Life Journal Daily Reading Plan (Life Resources). It is an OT/NT parallel plan.

    Every year I find my appreciation for the OT growing stronger and connecting with and pointing to Jesus Christ.

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