Saturday, February 18, 2012

On Finishing Goals...A Little Early

In February, I set a couple of goals for my Bible reading. I wanted to read in The Soul Care Bible (NKJV) and the ESV Student Study Bible. I wanted to read 1 John at least thirty times. I wanted to read the gospel of John and Revelation (in addition to 2 John and 3 John) several times apiece this month. (Turning February into a celebration of the apostle John.) I also wanted to read Psalms and Proverbs in the NKJV. Those were the original goals at any rate. A few weeks into the project, I realized it was very possible for me to finish the NT in the Soul Care Bible AND the ESV Student Study Bible. All that remains to meet this month's goals is to read Matthew and Acts in the ESV Student Study Bible. I hope to do that in the upcoming week.

I've been on the fence with whether or not I should have "special" goals for Lent. (Ash Wednesday is this Wednesday, the 22nd)

On one hand, I do plan on having goals during these weeks. I am hosting the event/challenge New Testament in a Week during Holy Week (April 1-8). And I really would LOVE to have you join me. My "special" plan is to finish reading READING GOD'S STORY: A CHRONOLOGICAL DAILY BIBLE. (My partial review--my review of the OT readings.) It's in the Holman Christian Standard Bible translation. Though participants can read in ANY translation, of course. But I've been saving this one just for this occasion. It will be interesting to read the NT in chronological order, to see just how they arrange everything. I haven't looked too closely at it yet because I'm afraid I'd be tempted to start now. And I wanted to go on the record for committing to read the Bible six hours a week throughout Lent. I'd love to commit to twelve hours a week. That would challenge me even more. But I thought six was a good number, a good starting place.

On the other hand, I don't technically plan on "observing" Lent. Not in the self-denial, fasting, giving up things way. In the past I've played around with giving up things--and I've been somewhat successful at sticking with it. But part of me is thinking that if I feel guilty enough about it to think I should give it up for Lent, that I'd be better off staying parted with it. God doesn't call us to obey him just these forty-some days of Lent. Generally speaking, I think it is better to think of it as a time for adding something positive. Or perhaps what I'm trying to say is that it is an OPPORTUNITY to start anew or change your priorities. It takes time for good habits to develop. And this time, for some at least, is a blessing.

The translation I plan on reading next--whether it is for "Lent" or just for March, with a little bit of a head start in February--is the New International Version. This isn't a version I've read much in since the publication of the ESV. But I'd like to revisit it since it's been a while.

I am thinking I'll use a super-modified version (my own super-modified adaptation) of the Professor Horner reading plan or concept. (I kept Psalms and Proverbs. I shifted *many* of the books around, especially in the OT.)

OT One -- Psalms (monthly)
OT Two -- Proverbs (monthly)
OT Three -- Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, 1 Chronicles, 2 Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi (so-not-monthly; I'm thinking this group will take at least two months if not three)
OT Four -- Job, Ruth, 1 Samuel, 2 Samuel, Song of Songs, Ecclesiastes, 1 Kings, 2 Kings, Joel, Amos, Jonah, Hosea, Micah, Nahum, Zephaniah, Habakkuk, Esther (so-not-monthly; I'm thinking this group will take at least two months)
OT Five -- Isaiah, Obadiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel, Daniel (I'm thinking this will probably a month to six weeks)

NT One -- Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Acts (monthly, 4 chapters a day would be monthly; 8 chapters a day would let me read it twice a month)
NT Two -- Romans, 1 Corinthians, 2 Corinthians, Hebrews, 1 John, 2 John, 3 John, Revelation, Jude (I'm thinking twice a month)
NT Three -- Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, 1 Thessalonians, 2 Thessalonians, 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon, James, 1 Peter, 2 Peter (I'm thinking twice a month)

© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible

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