Frequently Asked Questions for Our Bible Reading Plan
This past Sunday we announced that we are diving into an exciting season of reading through the entire Bible, from cover to cover, over the next 14 weeks as a church family! With this announcement may come questions, so we wanted to provide helpful information for you as we begin together on Monday, Sept. 23rd.
We are so grateful that Jesus is stirring in us a desire to know Him more fully through His Word. We’ve heard story after story of men and women who are excited to read through the Bible in its entirety, many for the first time! For most of us in our discipleship to Jesus, though, the next step is to move from a Godly desire to a Godly discipline to see the realization of our desire. In other words, it’s good to have a goal but without making some changes, it will be incredibly difficult to achieve our goal. This content is designed to help you think through what changes you can make to successfully complete the reading plan.
When do we start?
We start this upcoming Monday, September 23rd. You will receive a bookmark on Sunday at Gathering with the Bible reading plan, but feel free to also access the plan on our app, which will go live Monday morning. Get our app here: https://subsplash.com/restored/app You can also view the digital bookmark here: READING PLAN
How should I plan for my reading time?
One 45 minute session or two sessions of 20 and 25 minutes is optimal. We strongly recommend putting this on your calendar before Monday, because you likely don’t need to find time, but rather make the time in your schedule. The busier you are the truer this is. It is also good to think about what time of the day you will be reading. Will you read in the morning, on your lunch break or in the evening?
Which translation of the Bible should I use?
As a church we recommend using the CSB, NIV or NLT. You can either read or listen to the Bible. If you are able to, we would encourage reading, simply because it will most likely be easier to follow than listening while driving. If you are going to listen to the audio, check out Dwell, which is an audio version that may help you enjoy it more: https://dwellapp.io
What other resources will help me understand the Bible?
Before starting each new book of the Bible, we highly recommend watching the corresponding Bible Project video to that book. Some books of the Bible can be confusing without context of who wrote it, why it was written and who it was intended for. Watching these short and engaging Bible Project videos before each new book will help give an overview on what is taking place throughout that book. Watch here: https://thebibleproject.com/explore/
What will prevent me from reading?
If you account for a ten hour work day, eight hours of sleep and one hour for a commute, you should have around five hours or so of time left in your day. Accounting for roughly three hours of family, friend and meal time, that leaves many of us with two free hours a day. Considering the Bible reading plan requires you to read or listen for 45 minutes a day, if we are being honest with ourselves, most of us do have time. However, although we hate to admit it, there are often distractions that keep us from what matters most. Here are some things that may get in the way:
False Expectations: Assuming you should “feel something” or “get something” out of it every day will disrupt your ability to engage if that doesn’t happen. Remove unrealistic expectations for God to show up in the way that you want Him too. Our desire is to engage with Him through His word, trusting Him to figure out when and what he wants to do in our lives as we read. Some days may feel monumental and others may feel mundane, and that’s okay! We trust the Spirit is at work, even in the moments we can’t “see” or “feel” it.
Laziness: There will be days you don’t feel like reading. We can’t encourage you enough to push through even when you don’t feel anything. Reach out for accountability, prayer & encouragement!
Spiritual Warfare: Jesus loves that we will be engaging with Him through Scripture, but Satan hates it. Pray for protection, against distraction and for a deep desire to push through even when you don’t feel like it.
External Demands: Try to plan your reading with a decent amount of margin (about 15 min.) before your next activity. This will help ensure that if things are interrupted, you can most likely still finish your reading for that day.
What if I miss a few days in a row?
We would encourage you to simply pick up with that date's plan and keep going. There will always be time next year to jump back to what you missed, but we pray you would feel free from the pressure of missing a few days and inability to "catch-up."
What can I do to help make room for the 45 minutes a day?
We recommend evaluating your time and seeing where you spend it. You may need to delete apps like Youtube, Instagram, ESPN, news apps and Netflix, etc. for the next 14 weeks. And, it may be helpful to put into place a "No Facebook or Netflix until I have read today” type of practice. Each of us spends our time differently, so we encourage you to spend some time with Jesus asking Him if there is something specific He may be calling you to say no to in this season to create the time in your schedule to dive into His word.
The goal of this isn’t to create a legalistic set of rules but to actively remove obstacles to accomplishing your goal of reading the Scriptures over the next 100 days. God will not love you more if you read the Bible, but you will experience more of His love through the Bible and that is our biggest prayer and intent as we dive in together!