I’m a natural skeptic to Bible reading plans. I guess it’s a finely tuned radar for anything smacks of legalism and box-checking. The thing is, that without a plan, spiritual disciplines just won’t happen. I’ve never casually fallen into consistent discipline, slid unknowingly into vibrant prayer, or accidentally made time to read the Bible. It takes intentionality. I’m also a much better sprinter than marathon runner – short bursts of intentional study are fun and challenging, but longer plans can feel like a prison.
In 2016 I decided to try out the He/She Reads Truth app. It’s a Bible-in-a-year reading plan. And I completed it, which is a big deal for me since I’d never previously made it past February in similar plans. If you’re looking for a plan for 2017, you might just consider it. Here’s what I liked:
- It’s on my phone. That means that it’s always with me. I could read on the Metro. I could read at a coffee shop while I waited for someone who was late to a meeting. Anywhere, really. Most of the time I still used my physical Bible to read because I like the tactile experience of it, but having the plan with me at all times made it much more achievable.
- The plan is chronological. This plan doesn’t go straight through the books in the order they appear. It does a good job of spacing out and separating the books that are harder to get through, and basically seems to follow a chronological plan that allows the reader to hit the prophetic books within the reading context of the historical setting they spoke into. That made the whole year much more engaging and interesting for me.
- The Psalms are once/week. I love the Psalms. This year was a personally challenging one for me and I read the Psalms with a different level of longing and need than ever before. Still, reading straight through the entire Psalter can be brutal. He/She Reads Truth has a Psalms reading once per week so they are spread out in bite-size portions throughout the whole year.
- The whole Bible. There are definitely sections that I’m more interested in reading than others, and that will be true for anyone that takes time to read the Bible. It’s important not to neglect the less-favorite parts, though. Some of it was a grind to get through, but I found myself surprised at the timeliness of an obscure text that I otherwise wouldn’t have encountered over and over again. God’s Word is living and active – all of it.
- Trackable progress. It might be petty, but I loved seeing the percentage go up as the year went on. It made me feel like it was achievable as I hit 20, 50, 70%. It was a big motivator.