I will start by making myself clear and stating the obvious: I am a work in progress, both in my bible-reading habit and in my Christian walk. My thoughts, words, and actions get tangled and tarnished every single day. I sin every day is perhaps the shortest way of saying it, and my character needs a lot of pruning from all angles.
Second declaration: While I have been intentional about growing in my faith walk, I have never read the entire bible (yet).
Now all things clear, let me offer you some nudge to get you started in reading your bible more often and more consistently, hopefully.
Over the past two years, my bible-reading habit has taken a better shape. I emerged from one bitter season of my life when I felt so broken and helpless and in need of God’s grace (though I’ve been a Christian for years). I was anchoring my self-worth in all the wrong things.
One day, God crushed me deeply, and I knew it was time to come home to His loving arms. Pretty much the story of the father running towards his returning prodigal son, embracing and kissing him, forgiving him, and restoring him to his place as if he never lived a reckless life. (*tears here*)
It felt the same for me—a new life, a new beginning. I started reading my bible more often, realizing my brokenness and my need for this redeeming kind of love every day for the rest of my life.
On the other hand, I have also recovered and regained sleep from early motherhood which allows for more fringe hours and rhythms and routines in my household. I started waking up earlier.
Let’s say my bible-reading habit started from a change of heart and a change of morning routine. It’s an inside-out change.
One Small Step – A Little Question for You
The other important thing that got me into reading my bible almost every day is when I personally asked myself this question:
Is it essential?
To paraphrase it, ask yourself:
“Is reading the bible essential to me?”
After all, we make time for the essential—for the absolutely necessary—don’t we? We eat. We sleep. We exercise. We brush our teeth. We play with our kids. We load the laundry. We clock in at work.
Reading the bible for me is essential because I want to know God and His will for my life. Because I mess up every day and the characters remind me that they had struggled with sins and brokenness, too, just like me. Every book assures me that I am fully known and yet fully loved. I need to bask in this truth every day so God can work in me, through me and with me.
Maybe, you just need to sit quietly somewhere and ponder on this question too to get you started:
Is reading the bible essential to me?
Some Practical Steps
“There’s no one way to open Scripture—everybody’s devotional time will look different—but there is a right way to pursue it: consistently.” ~ Christen Wetherell
As with every change, you need to make a plan. Here are five things that I find helpful and can recommend for you:
Put this verse to heart – Matthew 6:33.
Schedule it – Review your usual schedule for the day. Find the block of time where you can fit in your bible-reading with no distractions and commit to that time. This time spot will look different for everyone but for me, this is between the golden hours of 4:30 to 6:30 AM when all is quiet and I am not needed by anyone.
Put your phone away (must) – I have been striving hard not to touch my phone before I read my bible. There is no information worth consuming, message worth reading, and social media worth scrolling before God’s Words. Can I get an Amen?
Get a new bible (optional) – I got this leather-bound, journaling ESV bible for my birthday last year. I’d like to pass it on to Zeya someday with all my scribbles and prayers on it. Something similar here.
Press on (must) – There are days when opening a page in the bible is as hard as seeing my flaws in the mirror. There are days when reading it is a pure delight. But one thing I do is to press on and try again if I fail. God’s mercy is new every morning, after all. Take heart. Press on a thousand times over.
Read your bible friends. The more we get to know God, the more we will fall in love with Him.