It’s the beginning of a new year, and with that comes the renewed commitment to a variety of things: losing weight, better financial stewardship, a spiritual discipline. What transpires so often though, is we have great intentions only to drown in a failure to execute said plans. It’s easy though, to make resolutions, it’s much more difficult to be consistent with them.
As a Pastor of a small, rural church, I’ve taken the time to encourage our church to one of the most important commitments they could make in 2014 – read the Bible. The Bible is the most important book ever written, yet for many of us, we’ve failed to read through it, or for some, even attempted to read thorough it! We are most to be pitied!
May I encourage you to read through the Bible this year? I realize that for many of us, reading is a struggle, but if you develop a strategy, and write it down, you are more likely to follow through with the reading. So, below are some tips (not perfect), that might help you reading through the Bible in 2014:
1. Buy a new Study Bible. As we read the Bible, some things can be confusing, or difficult. Trust me, it happens to me weekly! But a good Study Bible can aid you in understanding the meaning of the text. Consider the HCSB Study Bible or ESV Study Bible. Both are filled to the brim with resources that can help you grow.
2. Choose a plan and stick with it. If you choose to read the Bible the entire year, or just the OT or NT, does not concern me. My Bible reading plan involves both OT & NT, but the key is finding a plan and sticking with it! The Study Bibles mentioned above have in them Bible Reading plans if you’re looking for one. CLICK HERE if you’d like to investigate a variety of Bible Reading plans out there.
3. Read with Eyes/Hearts Open. Often when we read, we rush through it to check it off our to-do list. Before I begin reading, I’ll ask the God, by way of the Holy Spirit, to teach me His Word, and ask Him to help me apply it to my life. Open eyes and open hears allow us to submit to the Lordship of Jesus.
4. Stick with it! I realize that for many of us, we’ll begin with a great goal, yet falter along the way – but stick with it! Even when you miss a day or a week, simply pick up where you left off and keep at it. The easiest killer of Bible reading is giving up. Stick with it!
So, what will be your plan in 2014?