How to Chose a Bible Reading Schedule
Are you confused about finding a great Bible reading schedule? If so, you’re not alone. There are thousands of Bible reading schedules on the internet, and with a little research you may find one that suits you. I have some resources below, and of course, I have my own favorite schedules.
If I’ve learned anything about Bible reading, I’ve learned that it is an intensely personal exercise. Before choosing a reading schedule, spend a few moments evaluating your personality, your values and your time constraints. For more information on this subject, take a look at my book, The Bible Reading Revolution <here>.
Are you a fast reader or a slow reader?
First, determine whether you are a fast reader or a slow reader. Fast readers like the dynamic impact of having complete panorama of God’s Word freshly in their minds throughout the year. Slow readers value the devotional aspect of reading, meditating over each passage as they go.
If you are a slow reader, the kind of person who takes more than a year to get through the Bible, then you don’t need a schedule. A <checklist> will do, and you probably won’t even need that if you consistently pick up where you left off each day.
People who wish to read their Bibles in one year typically need a Bible reading schedule to keep them on track. People who read even faster definitely need schedules, for the same reason.
How much time do you have?
If you’re a busy mother, you may struggle to find the time. If you’re a bookworm by nature, you’ll find time no matter how busy you are. In either case, time management will be an important factor in deciding which schedule to choose.
Ellen’s favorite schedules
On this website, I have Bible reading schedules for one year, six months, four months and three months. Please choose one that suits your personality and your time constraints.
I developed them myself back in the days when there was no internet. I like them better than the ones I find online today because they differ in two ways:
First, I don’t go by chapter count. There are 1,189 chapters in the Bible. If you divide that number by 365, you’ll be able to complete the Bible in a year averaging about 3.26 chapters a day. The problem is that some chapters are long, others are short (the longest is 176 verses long and the shortest is just 2 verses).
In my schedules I use verse count, not chapter count, to divide out the days. There are 31,102 verses in the Bible, so in 365 days, you’ll be averaging 85.2 verses per day. Dividing everything out by verse count results in a more consistent reading load.
Second, my Bible reading schedules all have built-in catch-up days for every month except February. When I first developed schedules for myself, I wanted to start on the first day of any month. Originally I set up each month for thirty days, but if the month happened to be February, I was in trouble. I solved the problem by setting up each month for 28 days. Now I have either 2 or 3 catch-up days for 11 months of the year, and I’m not in trouble in February.
For myself, I have found over the years that I really need catch-up days! There’s nothing more distressing than falling behind in a Bible reading schedule.
You can find my schedules <here>. If you prefer to go to an outside source, I highly recommend YouVersion which has hundreds of Bible reading schedules. You can download their app at www.bible.com/app.
When you find the schedule you like, simply dig in and go for it! All of my schedules start on the first day of any month. If you prefer to start in the middle of a month, simply adjust the dates and you’re good to go.