I did it. I read the entire Bible, cover-to-cover, in 90 days. Scratch that: I actually finished on day 87. Even better!
Bible by Skeggzatori. Shared under a Creative Commons License.
I was sitting at my dining room table at 1:15–scarfing down Revelation instead of lunch–when I closed my Bible and slid it across the table. “Done!” I felt like doing cartwheels or fist-pumps, but I refrained and gave myself an inner high-five (then Tweeted about it, of course). 😉
I really don’t remember how I stumbled upon Amy’s blog–Mom’s Toolbox–or learned about how she joined readers from across the country (and the world!) into encouragement groups then served as head cheerleader for hundreds of people as they devoted 40 minutes or more per day to Bible reading. I’m glad I did.
It all started with Facebook. Yes, Facebook convinced me that I must read my Bible….it’s good for something after all! 🙂 A friend had posted a list of books that the BBC declared “must-reads” of all time. Being the book nerd that I am, I was deeply shamed when I saw “Old Testament” listed, but couldn’t say with certainty that I had read it all.
So, I got on the internet and declared my intentions to the world. This was really the most important part of the journey in the end. You see, “putting it out there” made me accountable. Members of my Mom’s Toolbox small group were rooting for me, my Sunday school class was rooting for me, my Facebook friends were watching my progress, and there was even one Sunday when The Husband shared my goal with the whole church! Not only did I feel convicted that reading the entire Bible was extremely important, I don’t like to fail. Simple as that.
Plus, I wanted other people to know it was attainable. I have failed SO many other Bible reading plans. Bible-in-a-year: failed. Gospels-in-30-days: fail. Megan’s Do-It-Yourself Plan: failed. Because this program required so much reading each day (approximately 12 pages), you just couldn’t afford to get behind. I knew that if I slacked too much, I’d never dig myself out of the hole in time to finish in 90 days.
I’ll be honest: it wasn’t all wonderful. Sometimes I got mad that I didn’t have enough time to read other things. Sometimes I was so bored I wanted to poke my eyeballs out (Thanks, Leviticus!). Sometimes things just didn’t make sense and that drove me c-r-a-z-y. Sometimes I felt guilty sitting down to read for such an extended period of time when there were chores to be done. Still, I firmly believe God will bless me for being obedient. He already has; my spiritual life has been refreshed!
The journey doesn’t end here. I took notes as I read (as evidenced by all my questions/comments on my weekly blog recap), and now I plan to tackle those questions by digging out commentaries, etc. to try to (hopefully) clarify some of my questions. But one thing that I’ve come to realize is that I may never know all the answers…and I’m okay with that.
Someone asked me what is the one verse/thought/book that really stuck out to me. That’s hard to answer. So many things were brought to my attention! I guess the two things that I have the most questions about after this read-through is regarding God’s temperament (using violence as a means to fulfill his purpose a la Old Testament) and the Holy Spirit (He was present in the OT and NT, which I had never noticed before). The one really wonderful thing that stuck out to me was Jesus as the fulfillment of prophecy. It was neat to read the prophets and recognize Him on the pages. Once we got into the NT, it was cool to see how they explained Jesus as a fulfillment of prophecy to their Jewish brethren.
For those contemplating participating in this program: do it! You have nothing to lose and TONS to gain. It’s so wonderful having a peace knowing that I’ve read every, single page of our Holy book. There’s no more wondering, “Have I really read all of Habakkuk?” Why, yes. Yes I have… 🙂
Mom’s Toolbox will be hosting another Bible in 90 Days program beginning on July 11 if you want to sign up.
My tips for reading the Bible in 90 days:
- Set aside a specific time each day to read. When I did this, I felt less stressed about making sure my readings were done each day. Otherwise, you spend the day wondering, “Am I going to have time to finish?” I wasn’t very good at this. Do as I say, not as I do. 😉
- Grab a notebook. What’s the point in reading if you’re not going to remember all the insights/questions that come up along the way?
- Tell everyone. Seriously…accountability is the key.
- Recruit some friends to do it with you. If you don’t have any willing to do it nearby, be actively involved in a Mom’s Toolbox group. Twitter is a great way to stay in touch with others who are reading and a great place to ask questions and get encouragement.
- “Just keep swimming…” Know that some days you’ll want to quit. Don’t.
Want to learn more about my Bible in 90 Days journey?
The post in which I declare my intentions (a.k.a.–“How It All Started”)
Motivation to Join the 90 Day Challenge (a.k.a. “Guilt Trip”) 🙂
Eeyore Must Have Been an Israelite (insights from Exodus/Numbers)
One Thing Leads to Another (Sometimes “just do it” leads to much better things!)
Happy reading! 🙂