The most requested thing for dinner around here? Noodles. With butter.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

New Year's Resolution part 1

I know... every parent, student, and teacher in America understands that the "year" really begins in September rather than January... but in this post, I am talking about January 1, 2010.

First, you need to know that I don't make too many New Year's resolutions. I don't make them because I usually don't keep them. When I don't keep them I feel like a failure, and who really needs that hanging over their head? (Of course, there was the time I resolved to watch more TV and eat more potato chips in 1992 than I did in 1991 and I actually succeeded in that so the success/failure rate is pretty balanced...)

I have resolved and attempted, more than once, to read the Bible through in a year. That's what good Christians do, right? They read the Bible from cover to cover. Regularly. John Quincy Adams did it every year and I'm sure his daily schedule wasn't always easy. Every time I attempted it I always did well until the school year was over and then my structured life sort of sagged and I got bogged down in Jeremiah and summer and... oops.

In late December, 2009, I saw something on the internet about reading through the Bible in 90 days. 90 DAYS??? Hmmmm... not too much of a commitment there. 3 months. I can do that. January, February, March, done. I looked at the schedule,

Original B90X reading plan

and I decided that it was do-able. Sure, there was lots to read every day, but I am a pretty fast reader and having a plan would help...

So, I made the resolution. I printed the plan from the website (set the preferences so it was very light colored because that is a lot of black ink to use), chose a Bible version to use, and started in. About 30 minutes a day, 90 days later, I was done.

Here's what I learned:

1. I chose the New Living Translation because I thought it would be more readable. It was, but it was also distracting because it is not the version I memorized from when I was a kid, nor is it the version I usually use in church or study.

2. The small print and thin pages were also distracting. I could see print from the other side and it sort of made things look muddy. (I also needed new glasses!)

3. Speaking of distracting- seems like the devil was conspiring against me every evening as I sat down to read! I finally figured out that my focus was better if I prayed before I started. Duh.

4. A somewhat humorous distraction was that there are many passages that I have learned as songs. So I'd be reading and the song or songs would get into my head and then I couldn't think about anything else! Handel's Messiah is all over the place! Not a bad thing to have Scripture running through your head, or to pause for contemplation while reading, but I was on a mission to get through in 90 days!

5. The B90X reading schedule is a little awkward. It breaks up chapters and themes and was probably divided up strictly by numbers of verses rather than what makes sense.

6. If you think the people in your life are impossible, take a look at what God had to deal with in the Old Testament. Seems like each generation had to be taught the same lesson over and over and over and...

7. If the Old Testament was made into a movie, you probably wouldn't want little kids to see it.

8. The Bible is amazing. Reading it from cover to cover gave me such a good overview and insights of God, history, the future, and human nature. Nothing I hadn't known before, but tied all together is different than reading it in parts.

9. A good concordance is nice to have when you need clarity on a topic or passage.

After I got finished in March, I decided to read it through in 90 days again. I started in May and I'll tell you about it in my next post.

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