So now you’re pretty sure you’re going to do this thing…you’re going to read three quarters of a million words (783,137 words) in 365 days! Congrats! Now you need a plan.
DownsizeThe readings from the 365 Day Bible take an average of fifteen minutes a day, but the rate of arrival is not nearly as high as the rate of embarkation. What happens? Why do people start the plan and not finish? They start with good intentions, but the things of the world just get in the way.
Making the decision to seek God through His Word on a daily basis is the first step–a huge first step. An entire year of daily commitment takes unordinary discipline. It requires a focus on things above and a setting aside of the things of this world. You can decide today that this year, you are going to devote yourself to embracing who you are–a child of God and rejecting what you are not–a slave to stuff (Galatians 4:7).
Acting on the belief that the world will keep on spinning without our intervention and attention for fifteen minutes a day takes humility. It takes a reduced estimation of our importance to the management and maintenance of the universe.
Pursuit of worldly success that leaves no room for God is a fruitless waste of time. But the rewards for spending time seeking God through His Word reap both earthly and eternal payoffs.
“Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain.” Psalm 127:1
Maybe that sounds a little dramatic. It’s really just fifteen minutes a day. Right? But if you start out determining that the things of the world aren’t going to stop you from getting to know…the God of the universe…then neither the ding of a text, nor the aroma of baking bread, nor any other tyranny of the urgent will distract you, and you will treat those fifteen minutes with enough reverence to accomplish your goal.
Designating a specific location and time of the day to devote yourself to reading the daily selections will significantly increase the likelihood that you will continue. Grab a cup of coffee, nestle into your favorite chair, and declare this time sacred.
- Set a time – Block out fifteen minutes of your day, preferably at the start of the day and at the same time every day. There are rhythms in life and patterns that we follow. We are creatures of habit, and the more regularly we repeat something, the more natural it becomes.
- Set a place – Create an atmosphere that you look forward to retreating to. This is your time. Your space. Your mission to better yourself, honor God, and benefit those around you. Build an association with this place so that your brain lights up at the prospect of you snuggling into that chair to read a Word from God.
- Focus – Be determined to read and absorb every word. Like finding a treasure in the sand on the beach, sometimes we have to trudge through long lists of geography and genealogy to get to the trinkets God has for us. It’s all part of the journey. Decide ahead of time that trudging through difficult or mundane terrain won’t deter you.
And if you really want to supercharge your life, add another fifteen for prayer and meditation. Listen quietly to what He is speaking to you.
God does His best work through people who come to His table empty, poor and hungry for Him. He shows favor to the humble who humbly seek Him.
The time we invest in Scripture study has a compounding effect. The more time we spend with God, the more time we want to spend. We develop a spiritual muscle that gets stronger and stronger. Our walk gets closer and closer and our blessings get bigger and bigger.
Dedicating the first fifteen minutes of your day to seeking the Lord through His Word will bring enormous returns in your life and in the lives of those around you.
Tip: If you get behind, don’t try to catch up. That’s right! Don’t go back to the day you missed and try to read every missed day. Whether you missed one day or three months, just start with today’s reading. When and if you have time, you can go back to the days you missed. Progress not perfection. 😉
Note: If you’ve never proclaimed Jesus as Lord, that is the place to begin. A whole new world of understanding will open up to you when you have the Spirit of God living in you. For a quick guide, click here.