As a child, I thought I was “supposed” to Bible Reading Plans. When I went to high school, I wanted to read the whole Bible and made several unsuccessful attempts to do so. I usually started with Genesis and got excited, but then broke down somewhere around Leviticus. Then, when I was about 18 years old, I read a book about Bible study, and it had the keys I needed to open the door to successful daily Bible reading. That was over 25 years ago, and I haven’t missed a day of my Bible reading since. In those 25 years, I have found other keys that make the difference between people who successfully read the Bible and those who don’t. Here’s what I’ve found.
1) Most people fail when they try to read the Bible from cover to cover from page one.
It’s possible, but you have to admit that Leviticus and Numbers are not the most fascinating books, and reading them can be quite tedious. In my experience, people don’t yet have a firm habit of reading daily when faced with these difficult books. Therefore, they either lose interest or begin to resist reading the Bible. Solution: choose a plan that starts with the New Testament or includes readings from the Old and New Testaments so that you can break up the tedious reading of less easy-to-read books.
2) Success comes to those who choose a pace that suits them.
Some plans require reading only a few verses a day, others require reading several chapters. I don’t think one approach is necessarily better than the other, but it really depends on your personality. I found that a few verses weren’t enough to hold my attention. I wanted more, so I decided to read four chapters each day. Someone else might feel lost because of so many chapters. When you start reading the plan, you’ll quickly see if there are too many or too few blocks to read. Make adjustments accordingly: divide the reading, combine the reading, or get a whole new plan.
3) Choose a plan that you are interested in.
This is very subjective, but important. In some plans, you read several Bible passages at once. For example, each day you might read a chapter from the Old Testament, a chapter from the New Testament, and a psalm. Some people love this variety. Others feel overwhelmed by the large number of passages in one reading. Again, there is no one right way to do this. The key is to choose a plan you are comfortable with, especially in the beginning, so you don’t struggle with it.
4) Some people need breaks to be successful.
A number of Bible reading plans call for 5 or 6 days a week rather than 7. These plans allow a day for reflection or catching up. I strongly recommend not making exceptions at the beginning unless it is planned. I highly recommend not taking breaks in the first 30 days because you want to build a solid foundation for daily reading.
5) Successful people have a plan not only for content, but also for when and where they will read it.
If you start your day with the idea of reading a book at some point, you’re likely to move it around on your schedule until it comes off the page. When planning, consider when and where you will read. Consider linking your reading to an already established task, such as eating breakfast or going to bed.
I hope these tips will help you choose the right book for your Bible reading. There are many on the Internet. Choose wisely, and you will be successful.