So this year, I had a non-scheduled Bible reading plan. My goal was to read 3 chapters of the Old Testament and 2 chapters of the New Testament each day, but if I missed a day or two or ten, I wasn't behind schedule since this plan wasn't tied to the calendar. I just picked up where I had left off and kept reading, reading extra if possible, but most importantly, continuing to read no matter how sporadic it was. Interestingly, though I find it very tedious to read some books on my Kindle, I really like reading my Bible on the Kindle. It's easy to mark passages, easy to bookmark my place, and it was actually helpful (as in not discouraging) to have no easy way to look ahead to see how much I "had" to read that day.
This non-plan was a great plan for me! I finished the New Testament in early summer, and ideally it would have been nice to read it again in the second half of the year. But I knew I had enough of the Old Testament still to read that I needed to focus there in order to finish in a year. So I tried to read 4 chapters of whichever historic or prophetic book I was in and 2 Psalms each day. I finished the Psalms around Thanksgiving and read a chapter or two of Proverbs during December. I had to squeeze in the Minor Prophets between Christmas and New Years, but with fewer activities that week, I finished Proverbs 31, Zechariah, and Malachi on New Year's Eve. Praise the Lord for His grace to persevere in His Word!
Now that I have once again read the Bible in a year, however, I think I agree with my college professor William Varner, who recently commented, "I applaud all those who read through the whole Bible in a year or 2-3 times a year, but I have found that it is not as important that I go through the Bible as that the Bible goes through me. So slower is better." With that in mind, my plan for the coming year is not as ambitious. I'd like to read the New Testament through at least once - twice would be better - so I will again try to read 2 chapters of the New Testament a day. I was surprised this past year at how difficult I found parts of the Old Testament, especially the prophetic books, and I found Isaiah to be one of the most mysterious. In and around all the familiar verses that speak of the Messiah, the Suffering Servant, and God's promises of His sovereign care, there were many passages that I read, but without understanding. So I'm planning to spend some quality time with Isaiah, Calvin, and Matthew Henry this year to see if I can better grasp its truths.