Why don’t people read the Bible more? Most Christians say it’s because they don’t have enough time. This week, we’ve been talking about how you can use a Reading Plan in the Bible App™ or at YouVersion.com to genuinely engage with the Scriptures. Most of us probably don’t feel there’s any “spare time” in our busy schedules. But there’s actually lots of time each day we could reclaim. Have you ever considered how much time you spend in a typical day…waiting?
When your Bible’s always with you, you can read:
- Before anyone else you live with gets up (if you’re a morning person).
- While you’re having your morning coffee or breakfast.
- During your morning/evening commute on the train, the tube, or the bus. (Please: Not if you’re driving!)
- While you’re waiting for a meeting to start.
- As you’re eating lunch or taking a break from work.
- When you’re waiting in line. (This could be anywhere: the grocery store, the post office, a movie.)
- When you’re using the restroom. (Some of us get more time in the loo than others—some of us, much more time.)
- While you’re hanging out waiting for your kids at soccer, at dance, at football practice, at volleyball, to get out of school… (If you have kids, you know this list could be practically endless.)
- After everyone else you live with is asleep (if you’re a night person).
With the Bible App or another free tool, God’s Word is always as close as your phone. With offline versions like ESV and NLT (among many others), you don’t even have to be connected to the Internet or your service provider. If you don’t already have the Bible App, get it now. And start redeeming your time.
When we tell other people about our goals, we’re more likely to follow through and complete them. Even if you only mention it casually, it’s like making a check mark in your mind: “I need to do that.” Every time we talk to that person later, we’re reminded of our commitment. In this way, our relationships compel us to do the things we actually wanted to do in the first place.
Our friends and loved ones help us too, often without even realizing it, just by bringing it up: “Hey, remember you told me you were going to do that Bible reading plan this year? How’s that going? Where are you in it? How much have you read?”
Make your goal to read the Bible each day a part of your normal conversation. When you’re talking to your friends or family about everything else going on your life, even just casually mentioning it is enough.
Deuteronomy 11:18–21 says, “So commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these words of mine. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Teach them to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, so that as long as the sky remains above the earth, you and your children may flourish in the land the Lord swore to give your ancestors.”
(New Living Translation)
There’s power in bringing the other people in your life…actually into your life.
Want a little extra help? Tomorrow, we’ll tell you how you can take this idea further.
Have you ever read the entire Bible? It seems like a pretty big book, doesn’t it? So where do you start? What’s a good way to begin? Most people, once they decide to read the whole Bible, try to approach it like any other book: They start reading on page 1, then try to just keep going…
But of course, the Bible’s not just any book. It’s much more than that: It’s God’s Word to us, a collection of inspired books and letters, given to His people, written across thousands of years. When we take them all together, the historical accounts, wisdom, and truth recorded in the Bible give us an overarching view of God’s overwhelming love for us.
To follow through on your desire to engage with the Scriptures every day in 2011, it makes sense to start with a plan. It’s our sincere hope here at YouVersion that we’ll be able to help people read 1 billion minutes in the Bible App™ just during January. Here are just a few of the 14 approaches we’ve brought together to help carry you through God’s Word:
- The One Year ® Bible. In as little as 15 minutes a day, the One Year ® Bible in the New Living Translation (NLT) gives you daily readings from the Old Testament, the New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs.
- M’Cheyne One Year Reading Plan. Robert Murray M’Cheyne (pronounced mick-SHANE) was a Scottish minister from 1835 to 1843. His unique Bible reading plan takes you each day through 2 passages from the Old Testament, 1 from the New Testament, and 1 passage from either the Psalms or the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John). In just one year, M’Cheyne will help you read the Old Testament once and the New Testament and Psalms twice.
- Chronological. Based on recent historical research, this plan delivers your daily Bible readings in the order the events actually occurred. Reading the Bible this way helps you understand the progression of what things happened when.
- Bible in 90 Days. Make no mistake: This plan is a commitment. But the many who have gone through the entire Bible in just 90 days report that doing so helped them make lots of connections they had previously missed while in their Bible reading. You could consider it a challenge…or just a really worthwhile way to connect with God every day through His Word.
We want to help you love the Bible as much as we do. You can do this. Discover for yourself what a difference it can make to spend just a little time with God’s Word each day!
We’ve been telling you how Reading Plans can help you engage with God’s Word. A Reading Plan breaks your Bible reading into manageable chunks, making your time in the truth every day simple and straightforward. Whether you’re reading the whole Bible in a year (or in 90 days!), or just select parts, or even the most basic daily devotions, the Bible App™ by YouVersion has more than 50 plans to help you meet your goals.
Wherever you’re going to read, first you need a free YouVersion.com account (it only takes a minute). You might also consider linking your account to your social networks. If you have an iPhone, iPad, Android, or BlackBerry, click on your device or platform below for step-by-step instructions for starting and using Reading Plans: