How I Learned to Love God’s BookAfter more than five years of full-time ministry – teaching, preaching, and leading, I felt the need for the discipline of consistent, personal Bible reading. Most of my Bible reading and study was in preparation for teaching. I was hungry for daily nourishment for my soul.
My wife Jean and I started reading the Bible daily, using a chronological, through-the Bible-in-a-year plan. Our daily discipline soon became a daily delight and we wanted more! So we added a monthly reading through Psalms and Proverbs – Proverbs for the mind and Psalms for the soul. Our Psalms and Proverbs plan is simple. Each day we read five Psalms, corresponding to the day of the month (January 1 we read Psalm 1, 31, 61, 91, 121 and Proverbs 1. January 2 we read Psalm 2, 32, 62, 92, 122, and Proverbs 2.) And so on through the months of the year.
We started our daily reading using the King James Version, then after a few years we began reading from the New International Version. In recent years we’ve read the New Living Translation and the Message Translation. Switching Bible translations every few years has kept it fresh and interesting and has challenged us to actually think about what we are reading in new ways and see it through new eyes.
While we were serving as missionaries in the UK, Jean combined the Through the Bible in a year Chronological Bible Reading Plan and the Psalms and Proverbs in a Month plans into a booklet which we distributed widely for several years. Then in 2002 we learned about a new chronological reading plan that covered the entire Old Testament once and the New Testament twice each year. This plan gave us some Old Testament and some New Testament each day. We liked the idea of not having to wait until late in the year to read some New Testament! This plan is now called the Life Journal Reading Plan and can be found on YouVersion.com.