Thursday, January 3, 2013

my best goal of 2012.

last year, when i made lots of goals (some out of conviction and some out of my own desires), one of them was to read my bible everyday. this was a conviction, i did repent, and i did start a new pattern.

(i should show you my other goals. and how i kept them for 1 week! or one hour)

in using this guide, i had the opportunity to read the entire bible in a year. which is awesome... if you can read like an hour a day. not fast reading but really reading. really soaking it in.

so i want you to look at my reading plan now. it's been through some children's hands, it's been colored on, it's been carried around, smooshed, often used as a coaster while reading and once, i wiped a booger with the paper. just kidding. i think.
but more importantly, i want it to be documented that i am still in the summer.

the point is, i may not have finished, i am still somewhere in july, but i was reading and will continue to follow the guide until i do.
a lot of times i could only fit in one check box. that was a 5-10 minute read day. sometimes i could do 3 and sometimes when it was 2 in the morning and no one was around, i could 6 boxes. boom. in december i did an advent devotional and not the guide.

i try to read in the morning and i try and protect the time that i know i have a window to work with (sesame street does me right). but some of the time, that doesn't happen. if you grew up as a christian you were told that you must do it right when you wake up. i mean, ya...that would be awesome. but that command is not in the bible. only that you DO read his word. only that you desperately NEED His word. only that you are quickly persuaded to go in the wrong direction by the world and the weight of your own cares.

so it is disobedient when we don't regularly get in his word. but it is not disobedient if you read the word at lunch or at night. and it's not disobedient if you don't check in all the boxes on your guide (made by a human, not God), every day. even if that was your goal.

you know yourself and you know when you're more likely to read...for me that really is the morning. i also am super unstructured and so a guide is like magic to me. i am baffled that someone sat down and mapped all of this out. it sounds like torture. if i were given the job of making the bible reading guide it would quickly turn into a craft project. where you would eventually forget you were reading the bible because you were so focused on wrapping yarn around the pen (you were checking the boxes with) to make it look cute.

wait, what was i talking about? oh ya, reading guides.

if you miss a day, grace to you. God doesn't love you more or less for reading more or less of your bible.
but still, repent for finding what you value more than what God values. repent for making time for instagram and Facebook and blogs, magazines, books, cleaning, busyness, other people, and not making time for what God says is extremely important. His Very Word spoken to you and for you. your spiritual food that gives you LIFE and hope and joy amidst your troubling circumstances or helps you gain perspective in your excitement and happiness. not to mention, many of us are questioning who we are and what we are meant to do and what is the answer to our big questions in life, yet we aren't seeking the compass God has given us. no wonder we wander!

remember that behavior modification is not your friend. lasting heart change generated out of repentance is. i have to preach this to myself every day.

if you are looking to make a change in feasting on God's word,
the guide i use is here 

a great article on how not to read your bible in 2013 is here.


  1. This was really nice to read. Mu husband and I did the Bible in 90 Days challenge this past Fall and I really enjoyed it. It was a great way for me to just spend a large amount of time, getting every piece of His word in my head. Now, I'm moving through the Bible this year (much slower) and it feels a lot easier because it's more like a refresher than walking into a Quantum Physics class for the first time. May He continue to bless you and your family.

    ashley danielle

  2. This is one of my goals for 2013 as well. I am using the One Year Bible. You read from the OT, the NT, and a Psalm and Proverbs each day. I like this breakdown a lot and it's only about 15 mins a day. That way if I miss a few days, I can still get a few done in one day.

  3. Thank you so much for creating my goal for 2013. I have printed out the guide and can't wait to start! Thank you, Thank you, Thank you.

  4. I love this post! Thank you Jamie!!! I'm not a morning person and with little ones it's hard to get going and actually have quality time in the word. I'm a pastor's wife and have sat in many a Bible Study where we were told that the best Christian's read their Bible's in the morning. Insert massive guilt. But over the last couple years I have realized that God is not concerned with list of rules or how-to's or guides... he's concerned with the heart. If I sit down for 10 minutes at naptime to read and pray because I love him and long for time spent with him I believe God is pleased. If I sit down for a rushed and interrupted 10 minutes first thing in the morning when I'm groggy, not really concentrating, and out of obligation... well I just don't think that blesses the heart of the Lord. Thank you for sharing how you're doing and that it's all okay... GRACE! :)

  5. i love this post jami!
    i whole heartedly agree - reading the bible "in a year" is an awesome venture to take on. giving yourself grace is CRITICAL. that is definitely one thing i learned in it.

    and you are right, morning bible times is not IN the bible, it's extrabiblical. adding to the bible.

    i am so glad you said that.

    for me, in this stage of my life, morning bible times are what help me stay disciplined. but GRACE to myself when that doesnt happen, and i'm reading on my lunch break, or at dinner.

    love this. keep on keeping on. i'm rooting for you to finish well. :) you've got this. cause Jesus has got you!

  6. This post came at the perfect time. Every single word.

    I began reading the Bible everyday sometime last year. I check off my little boxes. And when I don't get to read in the morning, I get frustrated. Because it makes sense (to me) to read in the morning. Beginning of your day. Start-your-day-off-right kinda thing. BUT you're absolutely right. "it is disobedient when we don't regularly get in His Word. but it is not disobedient if you read the word at lunch or at night. and it's not disobedient if you don't check in all the boxes on your guide (made by a human, not God), every day. even if that was your goal."

    I really do appreciate this post. Thank you!

  7. I love this. for the encouragement and the kick in the pants. for the reminder that my priorities throughout the day reflect my heart. thanks!!!

  8. Amen. Just...amen.
    Needed to read this today.
    I too often find myself making time for Facebook, my blog, Twitter, etc. and not enough time to be in the Word.
    Yuck. Definitely going to work on that!

  9. Thanks for sharing the reading plan! LOVE IT and am printing it now!

  10. I lOVED this! And I am so with you. I started trying to read via the one year plan this past summer - and I am way behind. But it is rich. And it is good. My one year plan may take me a few years. That's okay. Thanks for always keeping it real.

  11. I'm so glad that you included the guide in your post. I was scrolling through Google Reader and immediately became intrigued! Every year, multiple times throughout it, I get reenergized to read the entirety of the Bible and then never do. I'm hoping this guide can assist :)

  12. I started of those guides three years ago (I know). It took me a while, but I finally completed it in 2012.

    Thanks for the encouragement!

  13. WIll you get ordained already & become a preacher? Not because you're more Godly than others, but because you speak the truth more than others.

  14. I always thought that Sesame Street should be subtitled "allowing moms everywhere to take a shower." I like this use of it better, though!

  15. Great suggestion--I just read through, but those guides really help people stay focused.

  16. Thank you so much for this post. I just emailed it to my husband because I think it speaks so clearly to what we need our goal to be this year as newlyweds. Thank you for sharing so honestly.

  17. Thank you for reminding me that, when I failed, I should have kept at it. And thank you for just telling it like it is. I hardly read my Bible (because sadly, pathetically, i forget. I have GRAND early morning intentions and then- out of sight out of mind.) But it is disobedient...

  18. This is great! I just found your blog via lowercase letters and love it!

  19. There is a fantastic bible study program you can follow that provides the frame for the bible. It covers the story and doesn't hit every book but once you know what's going on and the major players it's easier to go back and read the whole thing. I'm catholic so it's a catholic bible study (the Great adventure bible study). It really provides the structure with which to understand what's going on.

  20. very well said! our pastor once encouraged us that if we fail to do these spiritual practices for days on end, simply get up the next day and do them. and repeat. thanks for the guide! sometimes reading the bible is hard for me because I have no idea where to just randomly start reading. :) I printed this guide fully aware I may fall behind but at least it gives me a vantage point each day.

  21. It is the most important thing of the year, truly! I just started a TWO year Bible reading plan, from Gospel Coalition, which I'm super excited about. The other thing I'm trying to grow in is memorizing scripture. I have been SO blessed when I've done so before, but it's hard for me. This year I joined Ann Voskamp to memorize passages in Romans (gulp). Praying to make God's word alive in me this year!

  22. jami,
    you are the bomb dot com. this post was awesome. i'm convicted to read the entire Bible this year because how can i fall deeper in love with God without reading His eternal Word. even though it's hard to get past Leviticus and Numbers, i must push on. thank you for this post :)

  23. i was doing so well, and then fell off the wagon. :( gotta get back on. just having a hard time processing things when there is so much evil going on around me. i know i have to believe that He's around, and is walking with us, but that dang doubt comes out alot. thanks for the reminder that i can do it, one day at a time.

    ps - where'd the music go? did you tell us already, and i wasn't paying attention?

  24. Today is the one day I didn't read my bible today. I purposely didn't read it. Instead I took the time I take reading it in the morning, and instead sat quietly and prayed with God to help guide me in the new year to be the person He and I want me to be. It was morning of reflection, but tomorrow I will go back to reading daily!

  25. I think you can also find this plan on youversion for iphone and android too :)

  26. great post! We just talked about spending time seeking God's face this morning at church. Pastor compared it to our relationships with people and how we can't expect for them to grow if we're only asking God for things and never seeking him in his Word and prayer. And how we wouldn't expect for the public interactions we have with our wife/husband to build the intimacy in the relationship but that one on one time with one another is what builds it... in the same way, church and small group time is not going to create intimacy with God all by itself - you must have the one-on-one time with him.


leave a message after the beep.