I love the bible. I place a high value on the bible. My life has been changed by the bible. Yet, I pretty much stopped reading it recently.
This isn’t uncommon. There is a long line of people who would tell you how important they believe the bible is, yet they hardly read it. I wrote more about that here. It’s easy to hurl criticisms at those who don’t read the bible much, but they probably aren’t valid.
I didn’t stop reading the bible because I don’t care about my relationship with God. I didn’t stop reading because I don’t think it’s important. I didn’t stop reading because I’m lazy. There is a very specific reason that I got off track in my bible reading and it is the same reason that you struggle.
The key to consistent bible reading and all spiritual disciplines is routine.
I know that isn’t very sexy, but routine is the indispensable ingredient for steady bible reading.
The last couple weeks, I got really busy. I was working more than usual. I was traveling out-of-town. I had to wake up really early. I was living out of a suitcase. My entire routine was out of sync.
I am consistent in my disciplines when I am at home. My bible is in the same place that I always keep it. I have an established time that I read. I have my favorite spots to get some solitude. It’s automatic. It’s routine so it happens.
If you want to be more consistent in reading your bible and spending time with God establish your own routine.
Take out as many variables as possible.
Know the time and place and what you are going to read. Have your bible and your journal and your pen ready to go. When it is time, dive in. Don’t debate the issue. You have already made the decision. Read the bible and then do it again the next day.
My challenge lately is that every day is different. Every week is different. The routines that I’ve established are long gone and so is my consistency.
If you have a lot of volatility in your schedule, establishing a routine will be a challenge. Here is the key: Your routine has to be spending a few minutes each night making a plan for the next day. Your routine isn’t the bible reading. Your routine is making a plan for your next days bible reading.
Now, I know that will take a little discipline. It will take a little getting used to, but stick with it. When you plan your time with God, it will be much more likely to happen. It is a simple thing that makes a huge difference.
If you are struggling with regular bible reading, prayer or any spiritual discipline, establish a routine.