Every time I open my Bible app and scroll back approximately 30 days, I remember my mom saying, “I finished my Bible in a year, 3 years later!”
One great quality my mom has is doing devotions every morning. It was influential for me as a teenager to come up the stairs in the morning to see her in her chair with her Bible and/or devotions on her lap. What will always stick with me is her announcing that it took her 3 years to read the Bible, from a version that was supposed to be completed in 365 days. She taught me about faith, Christianity, and discipline.
For the past 2–3 years I have been trying to keep up with our church’s Bible in a Year reading plans. For whatever reason, I would get behind every year. We would go on vacation, I would have a stressful week at work, or I would simply forget! Every year I would scramble to get in what I missed, reading multiple entries in one day. I felt I had to “catch up,” but after a while, it became a chore. The Bible in a Year reading plan became a box to check.
I hadn’t gotten anything out of the previous years. I often listened to the app while I was doing chores or driving and my mind would wonder to other subjects. I wasn’t absorbing what I read, nor was I critically thinking about it. Sure I had read a majority of the Bible, but I hadn’t gotten anything out of it (not that there is much to absorb in Leviticus, but I digress).
This year I almost didn’t do the Bible in a Year “challenge,” but when my church announced it in the first service of the new year, I heard my mom say, “I finished the Bible in a year, 3 years later.” It dawned on me that I could TAKE. MY. TIME. Just because it says “in a year” doesn’t mean it needs to be completed in a year. I could read through the Bible at my own pace, using the easily digestible structure of a Bible in a year plan.
I have forever struggled with being a legalistic Christian, which probably stems from growing up in a Christian school, Christian household, and traditional church. My high school faith consisted of spiritual highs and strange rules I constructed around faith like being on a…