I just wanted to share something today that encourages me in obedience and faithfulness. This is my son. His nickname is Mo. In August 2009, he started with a goal to read the Bible all the way through. Today, April 15th, 2010 he completed reading the Bible all the way through for the first time!
We've taken off on vacations early in the morning and he had a flashlight in the back of the car reading his Bible. Or he'd be under his covers with the flashlight reading. After 3 weeks of consistent reading, he told us he really enjoyed it. He gets up early in the morning and reads. He read a few chapters in the morning and a few in the evening. He averaged reading 10 chapters daily. He broke it up by reading 5 in the morning and 5 in the evening. Sometimes, he'd read it in the middle of the day. He didn't get legalistic about it if he missed a day or didn't read 10 chapters. He just picked up the next day and read.
Congratulations son! We are very pleased with you!
How's your Bible reading going? Do you read it daily? once per week? whenever you feel like it?
I used to have difficulty reading the Bible especially if I started with Genesis and decided to go through to Revelation. I used to start out with a bang and then got bogged down in Numbers because well...it's all about numbers. Then I would fuzz out, trail off and not pick it up because I would get discouraged.
There are several Bible reading programs out there that are free and easy to use. There are even apps for the iPhone that make this an easy task. If you've never considered a Chronological Bible, try one of those. The books are arranged according to when they occurred and it really gives a fresh perspective on the history of mankind when read chronologically.
If you aren't actively engaged in reading your Bible except for the few passages your pastor may read on Sunday during the service, why is that? Do you watch TV? How many hours per week do you spend with your eyes glazed over staring at the non-edifying programming? Trust me, there is plenty of time to diligently study the Word of God. I am a wife and manage our home as well as homeschool 4 kids (3 middle schoolers and one elementary schooler), take care of all the bookkeeping (9 accounts), monthly taxes and quarterly taxes for our business, teach 7th-8th grade students in BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) and am involved in civic groups where I live, I blog, and read other books as well (I average around 100 books per year). I still find time to read my Bible. I gained 20 hours of my life back per week by cutting out television watching!
When I was a child, the TV was on all day and evening. It produced nothing good in me. Instead, it took me years to break the bondage I had to that stupid box. We don't have satellite or cable and I no longer watch any television show at all. I haven't for almost 6 years. We do watch an occasional movie together as a family but there are days the television doesn't even come on.
I say this for two reasons: 1) to encourage you to evaluate your time spent and 2) to encourage you to be diligent.
The system my family and I are using is Professor Horner's Bible reading system. You can access it here: http://www.scribd.com/doc/12349985/Professor-Grant-Horners-Bible-Reading-System. I would suggest laminating the bookmarks because they are going to get curled really fast if not. Also, you will need a pencil to circle the chapter you stopped at so you know where to pick up the next day.
I will tell you that I started out using this system with my study Bible. After realizing the impracticality of toting this voluminous tome with me if I wanted to go to an evangelistic outlet, I purchased a Bible just for the reading that would be easily transportable. Thus, I started over again. You're not trying to get an award or make sure God doesn't kick you out of heaven (as if that could happen), it's just a discipline that every Christian walking towards maturity should aim for. The point of Professor Horner's reading system is to read your Bible so frequently that you become familiar with what side of the page certain passages are on because you've read it frequently. I'm glad that I got a smaller Bible with the nuts and bolts. There is no commentary and it is thin and easy to transport. So, I strongly support is recommendation to "pick a Bible and stick with that one."
Lastly, if you still believe that you can't do it break it down by reading 5 chapters per day- just do something! My son spoke no English 4 years ago and came from a country that is not friendly to the Gospel. He'd never heard of God, the Bible, Jesus, none of the patriarchs, nor did he know that Zacchaeus was a wee little man. The Word of God transformed him! Allow it to transform you as well!