The One Month Check-Up

brother-sister-holdin-hands-768931-mLast month I issued a challenge to read the Bible every day, or, for those who already do, to challenge two other people to read the Bible every day and pray for them to be successful.

So how’d you do?

Yes, this is the day of accountability. How did you do?

And no, if you accepted the challenge, you didn’t fail, even if you didn’t open your Bible once.

How can I say that? Because you moved forward. You expressed a desire to read God’s word every day. So next time, you’ll move further.

For those who started out well for a day or two, then faded, you read more than if you had never made the effort. You too are further than you were before.

For those who were successful, but reading every morning felt like you were giving yourself an appendectomy without anesthesia, congratulations! Are you ready to go again? Because, believe it our not, reading the Bible every day won’t always seem so hard.

How about those who read the Bible every day and actually liked it? Awesome! Just know, it’s possible not every day will be like that. If you’re prepared for some “dry days,” you won’t be so tempted to chuck the whole process when they hit.

Here’s the thing for all of us to remember: reading the Bible regularly isn’t a pragmatic experience. The important thing isn’t “getting something out of it.” It’s not about filling our minds with facts so we can do the “gotcha” with the pastor at church. It’s not about flaunting our “spirituality” before others (Well, during MY Bible reading time, which I do every day . . .) It’s not a religious duty to check off our list, though it may feel like that some times.

Actually, what it is, is our concerted effort to draw near to God—which, by the way, comes with the promise that God will, in turn, draw near to us (James 4:8a).

Because of that verse, I know reading the Bible will be “successful.” It will bring us into relationship with God in a closer, more intimate way than before. That should be something every Christian wants.

And how about those of you who already read the Bible? Did you challenge two other people to do so as well? Did you pray for them? I mean, let’s face it. If we truly believe that our relationship with God is the most important thing in our lives, why would we horde such a pearl of great price? Why would we not want others also to be as tight with God as they can be?

There’s this verse in Psalm 37 that I think shows the kind of relationship God wants to have with us:

The steps of a man are established by the Lord
And He delights in his way.
When he falls, he will not be hurled headlong
Because the Lord is the One who holds his hand.
(vv 23-24)

I don’t know. I just think there is such intimacy in God holding our hand. I think of a parent taking the hand of his son as he crosses the street or a brother taking the hand of his sister as they approach the ocean to dip their toes in the water. You don’t generally take the hand of someone you don’t know or someone who belongs to another. You take the hand of someone close to you, someone you care about, someone you want to protect.

So our decision to read God’s revelation of Himself, His work in the world, His plan of redemption, is our way of saying we want God to take us by the hand.

And asking others to join us is saying, we don’t want them to miss out.

So how about it? Who’s ready to re-up? Who’s ready to forge ahead in August and commit to reading Scripture—a chapter, two, three, or whatever you believe is a practical, doable amount, given your schedule—every day for the rest of the month?

Who’s ready to approach two new friends or family members and challenge them to read the Bible regularly (don’t forget the most important part—pray for them every day to do just that).

And here’s me, making a commitment to pray for you who are re-upping. 😉

Published in: on August 5, 2014 at 5:51 pm  Comments (2)  
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