You will never find the time to read the Bible.
That seems crazy, but unfortunately, we’re all too busy to have time just lying around.
You must take the time, or make the time. In other words, block out the time required to accomplish the goal, and commit that time to God.
If you take transit to work, this is an absolutely perfect time for reading Scripture. If you don’t take transit, why not try it – and save money in the process!
Try to find a quiet place, at a time when you are less likely to be interrupted. Remove sources of distraction – things like cell phones with all of their notifications can be a real nuisance if you’re trying to read.
Let other household members know that you don’t want to be disturbed for the time you need. Alternatively, set aside the time early in the morning and late at night. Splitting your reading time up this way means that you don’t need to commit a big chunk of time all at once, and even more, you get to begin and end your day talking to God.
Have paper and pen handy – or a journal to take notes in.
So, what to read? YouVersion (see below) has a number of Bible Reading plans you might like to follow. Plans like “The top 100 Bible Passages” for example.
You might also like to follow a plan that takes you through the entire Bible in a given time. Plans are available that take you through the Bible in 30 days, 90 days or a full year. Select a plan that can be completed in the time you have available. For example, if you read on average 250 words per minute (which is typical) then the 30-day plan will require about 2.5 hours a day to accomplish. The 90-day plan takes up only an hour a day, including prayer time.
Why not try to Read the Bible in a Year?
Begin with prayer
At the appointed time, begin by asking God to prepare your heart to hear His word. Invite the Holy Spirit to reveal to you the meaning of the passage, and to make plain any steps you need to take to carry out the will of God as revealed in this passage.
Now is a good time to praise God thanking Him for his gift of His revealed word, and the blessings you enjoy from Him.
As you read
As you read, you can reflect on each section in prayer as well.
Try not to read too fast. Select a reading plan that matches your reading speed, so that you can accomplish your goal in the time you’ve set aside.
Don’t try to research or look up confusing passages. Just note the Chapter & Verse, and a brief description of what you need to know. Look these up later (see “Resource” below), talk to an elder about them, or discuss them with other members of your Community Group.
After you’ve read the allotted passage, prayerfully reflect on what was said in the selection.
Things to think about:
- To whom was the passage originally written?
- What was the author’s intent?
- What actions do you need to take in your life to carry out the will of God as revealed in this passage?
A good study Bible is really useful. The ESV Study Bible has explanatory notes for almost every passage, and can go a long way to clearing up things that may puzzle you as you read. The ESV Study Bible costs about $60, and comes with the right to log in to the online version, which has even more material. Even better, the online material is searchable!
There is also the Global Study Bible — a free alternative the above.
To make the most of the above two resources, create a login and sign in when you use them. In this way, you can take notes, bookmark passages and so on.
Besides the online study bibles mentioned. The BibleGateway.com allows you to compare the passage in different versions – even Greek! Also, it gives access to lookup by topic, search for words or phrases and various other aids to Scripture reading.
For phones or tablets, YouVersion allows you to read Scripture any time, any where and (almost) any version.