As a little girl I didn’t walk until I was eighteen months old. I would stand, holding onto the coffee table, even walk around it, but I wouldn’t let go of it and venture away from the security it gave me. It wasn’t until my parents realized that I couldn’t see and I got glasses that I began to walk. Then the world opened up to me as I began seeing things. The uncertainty that kept me holding onto the coffee table fled, allowing me to move around my world with ease.
A similar event happened a few years ago that was like getting glasses for me. For the first time in my Christian life I read through the entire Bible and a whole new world has opened up to me. It wasn’t from a lack of desire that I had never realized this goal, because I had tried numerous times; but the very thing that kept me from walking also hinderers my reading; that is my vision. And because I am not a strong reader, I struggled to read through the whole Bible, especially the Old Testament. I would be discouraged by names and places difficult for me to understand and pronounce so I would give up. Has this ever happened to you?
Early in January that year I was encouraged by what a friend posted on Facebook about how using the YouVersion Bible app to read through the Bible had helped her. So I decided to give it a try. After looking through the different plans offered for reading through the Bible in a year, I choose one, The Solid Life reading plan. I liked it because it is chronological (literally) and it takes you through the Old Testament once and the New Testament twice, providing variety. The app allowed me to set a reminder, so every morning my phone would tell me what I was to read that day.
Being able to download an audio version of the Bible so I could listen to it was another way technology served and helped me. I knew my mind would wonder if I just listened, so I would sit with my Bible open and read along each day as my phone read the Word to me. I let the audio pronounce all those words I couldn’t and I excitedly made it past the Pentateuch. By the end of June, I was deep into Second Samuel and starting on my second reading of the New Testament. As December rolled into view, I felt like a marathon runner who has the finish line in view. I was going to make it and joy flooded my heart. It is with gratitude to the Lord that I am writing about this because it truly has been a spiritual highlight for me.
As I read through the pages of Scripture I saw things that I had not noticed before and gained a greater understanding of how all the pieces of Scripture fit together. I truly saw that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). I saw that God loves us with an everlasting, steadfast love and that nothing is impossible for Him. I grew in my understanding of the plan of redemption from Genesis to Revelation. I also saw that man is rebellious and sinful, in need of a Savior. There were many days when I read something in the Old Testament only to have it referenced or quoted in the New Testament. Although I love Bible study, reading through the Bible increased my knowledge in such a way that it enhanced my study of Scripture.
It is with great excitement that I am on this adventure again! I started reading the same plan but I am reading a different version of the Bible because I want to use a study Bible this time around to help me with difficult passages, and to give further insight to what I am reading.
On January 2, I read about the fall of man (Genesis 2 and 3), the birth of Christ (Luke 2), and Christ’s second coming (Revelation 1). My vision became clearer as I realized in those four chapters that the gospel is spelled out. I have also discovered this time around that Mount Moriah where Abraham was told to sacrifice Isaac, is in Jerusalem where Christ later was sacrificed for sins of man. It is the very place where Christ will return and setup His eternal kingdom. WOW!
As I talked about what I learned with friends, I was surprised to find out that I wasn’t alone and many others had never read through the Bible either. So I ask, what has kept you from reading through the Bible? I want my story to encourage you because I truly feel if I can do it, anyone can. God’s Word is the pearl of great price, and like the man who sold everything to get it we should not let anything keep us from it. It is “the Lamp to my feet and the light to my path” Psalms 119:105.
Just as when I was a toddler, I needed help to see so that I could walk, we also need the Word of God to help us see so that we can walk in the light, not the darkness. I would encourage you to let go of the coffee table and explore the world open to you in God’s Word. It will change your life. My prayer for you and me is, “Open my eyes that I may behold wonders things out of your law” (Psalms 119:18).