Friday, March 3, 2017

One Year Bible: time management

I made it to month 3 in the One Year Bible reading plan! I know that one of my misconceptions was that I needed to read the whole Bible in one sitting. You can actually get a lot done if you manage your time well. My Bible Study Methods professor told us something that puts Bible reading and time management in perspective:

• If you put 15 minutes a day into Bible reading you will read the whole Bible in  one year;
• If you invest 30 minutes a day, you'll read the Bible twice in one year;
• If you invest 1 hour a day to Bible reading, you'll read the whole Bible 4 times in one year.

According to Mashable, middle aged Americans are spending around 7 hours a week on Social Media. I'm not asking anyone to start a mass exodus out of social media but if we mirror that amount of time in Spiritual Discipline and Bible reading, I believe our inner lives will benefit tremendously. Trust me, we all have time to invest in our spiritual lives.

I'm glad I decided to read the Bible this year. One of the benefits has been gladness. While everyone around me is stressed and freaking out, I'm feeding my heart with good words. I still have problems but they are definitely not taking control of my soul.

 I have the habit of reading the Bible first thing in the morning. It's partly a habit I developed, partly so it gets done. One of my mentors also told me that if you read it before you go to sleep, your spirit will be at peace and you will most likely think about the words you just read. It's like taking a "peace pill" instead of the "fear pill" that seems to be available for consumption all around us.
I was late in my reading last month but I got caught up. I just kept going from where I was while turning off social media for a little while (and NOT announcing it. LOL!). It took me around 2 days to get that done. A few years ago it took me months to get caught up but I did it. The goal is not to stop and just to keep going.

Reading the Bible in a Year is simply reading through it. Studying is a bit different. I am studying 1 Corinthians at my community women's Bible study. We take the time to really dive in each chapter, verse by verse. When I am reading the Bible, I am just reading. Because the Bible is a book about God, those words don't disappear in the air, they stay in my heart and spirit. They also pop up when I have challenging decisions to make. It's super cool.

I read my Bible with an open heart. I'm not reading to judge the words there because God already did that when He decided on what was going to get in the Book. I still use my brain and ask questions about it but I try not to get so judgmental that I can't receive the many lessons in every book. I'm not a scholar so I definitely don't read with that hat. I put on the hat of a person who wants to know the God she serves. I put on the hat of the person who is trying to make sense of her life on earth. I also put on the hat of the person who wants to figure out God's character through each chapter.

Friend, I hope you can read your Bible this year. Your 15-minute investment will reap eternal benefits. 

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