“Careful planning is part of what makes a person wise and productive.
Not to plan is considered foolish and dangerous.
This is true even though the Proverbs teach that we do not know what the future may bring.
‘A man’s mind plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps’ (Proverbs 16:9).
The fact that the Lord is ultimately in control of the future does not mean we shouldn’t plan.
It means we should commit our work to the Lord and trust him to establish our plans according to his loving purposes…He (God) planned for our joy; we ought to plan for His glory.” ~ John Piper
I am convinced that not much happens without a plan, so I’m sitting down to look at our Bible reading options for this upcoming year.
In the past we’ve gone through many different outlines and recently have been enjoying writing out different passages. But the new year offers a great opportunity for a fresh start and a solid attempt to daily read through the Bible.
Some available options:
Crossway offers ten different ESV reading plans (each available in multiple formats).
Several years ago we went through Ransom Fellowship’s Read Through the Bible Plan for Shirkers and Slackers.
The M’Cheyne reading plan includes reading through the Old Testament once and the New Testament and Psalms twice.
Ligonier Ministries also offers several free, printable Bible reading plans. Last year we completed their 5X5X5 which has you reading through the New Testament 5 days a week. It’s a great one to start with if you’ve never consistently read the Bible or if like me, you appreciate a slower pace and time to focus on a passage or book of the Bible.
52 Weeks Through the New Testament is arranged in such a way that you can pick it up and dive right in with week 1 at any point during the year.
Bible Gateway offers many subscription options as well (for free), including the daily audio Bible.
If you’re just getting started reading the Bible, one of Back to the Bible’s Challenges might be the way to go. They offer several options (21 day, 90 day, 6 months & 1 year challenges).
The Navigators’ Book-at-a-Time plan will take you through the entire Bible in a year with 25 readings per month (which allows for several “catch up days” if needed).
I also really enjoy going through some sort of daily devotional.
In past years I’ve worked my way through:
A Year with C. S. Lewis
Streams in the Desert: 366 Daily Devotional Readings
365 Days with Wilberforce (this whole series is really good)
And this year, I can’t wait to start reading Paul Tripp’s new book– New Morning Mercies: A Daily Gospel Devotional
And it’s always fun to start a new devotional with our kiddos as well. A few of our past favorites include:
Long Story Short: Ten-Minute Devotions to Draw Your Family to God
Mighty Acts of God: A Family Bible Story Book
One Year of Dinner Table Devotions and Discussion Starters: 365 Opportunities to Grow Closer to God as a Family
Big Truths for Little Kids: Teaching Your Children to Live for God
God’s Names (Children Desiring God)
The Gospel Story Bible: Discovering Jesus in the Old and New Testaments
We haven’t settled on our plan yet for 2015 and I’d love to hear what you have been encouraged by in the past or what ideas you have for this next year…
May God bless our desire to be intentional about spending time with Him in His Word this next year!