On Mondays I share just a quick word - usually something I have jotted down from my recent readings - to ponder as you face a new week. Monday musings, if you will. This week's quote was shared by a dear friend after discussing what makes the perfect planner.
This is my first Five Minute Friday of the year. Whew, I'm definitely rusty! Well, at least I gave it a try.
I try to join the Five Minute Friday community each week. The challenge is to write for 5 minutes flat on the one-word prompt given for that week. Lots of fun and a little scary to be so vulnerable. This week's word: Welcome.
The last time I stepped foot into my Grandpa's house was the morning after he had gone home to be with the Lord. For a girl who has had 14 addresses in three decades of life, coming back to a place that holds so many childhood memories is precious. I wandered around lost in what could arguably be the most familiar space on earth for me. Familiar as it was, there was no one there to welcome the band of grandchildren that stumbled through the doorway that morning, and that made all the difference in the world.
My Grandpa gave the best hugs. Great big "bear hugs" is what he called them. They were always welcoming and comforting and radiated love right down to your core. My Grandma made the best hot cocoa and her smile was just as sweet.
I've been thinking about my grandparents so much lately. I can't get over how welcoming they were. Everything about them said, "I'm so happy to see you." I never felt like I was being squeezed into their schedule, or pushed out their door. They just talked and listened like I was the only thing going on that day. And maybe it was. Maybe that's the gift of retirement that grandparents get to give their grandkids. Or maybe that is just who they were - they had hearts big enough to always make room for people.
We're only eight days into this year and one thing is obvious to me: if it's not kept simple, it's not getting done around here. This may not always be the case, but it is for this season of my life. My bible-engagement plan for 2015 is no exception. I need a no-fuss approach, or it will all fall by the wayside.
Enter: Reading God's Story: A Chronological Daily Bible
Honestly, this gem has been on our bookshelf since last year because my husband used it for his daily reading, so I feel like I'm late to the party. Again.
Why chronological story format is awesome
The bible is comprised of 66 individual books that fit together and tell one big long cohesive story. This is very cool. What's not very cool is that most days I can't even remember what I ate the day before, so when I am staggering to my couch at 5:00am trying to remember the name of my third born I need some help making sense of this epic story.
George H. Guthrie breaks up the bible reading into three "acts", and "scenes" within each act. (Thank you, Mr. Guthrie. You are a genius.) There are short notes at the beginning of new acts and scenes to help set the stage, if you will. This is immensely helpful, especially on those days my body can't absorb the caffeine fast enough and I need a big "YOU ARE HERE" arrow to help me figure out where I was and where I'm going in this huge story.
I also love that Guthrie has kept his words short and to the point, leaving most of the reading to just the bible, with a little help to keep me on track. Right now I prefer this approach over using a devotional that has a small amount of bible verse and a lot of extra commentary. Don't get me wrong, there's a place in my heart (and bookshelf) for good devotionals, but right now I want to read as much of the actual bible as possible so this is a good ratio for me right now.
My kind of "daily"
In addition to the acts and scenes, this bible is also broken into 52 weeks of 6 bible readings (about 20 minutes each) and 1 weekly summary and prayer meditation for day 7 of each week. What does this mean? It means the actual reading plan is really for 6 days a week, which makes it easier to catch up if you should fall behind. Like I did this week (ahem). The weeks and days are numbered, but not dated, so if starting in January is just too prosaic for you, you can start Week 1 anytime of the year. Also, it's a small thing, but I like details so I think it's worth mentioning that at the end of each daily reading is a check-box to help keep track of your reading progress. Simple and helpful - two things I love.
I intend to continue exploring the topic of bible engagement for the rest of January (there's just so much good stuff out there!). Next week's topic will be bible memorization and I'm excited to show you what I've been doing to make progress in that area!
How about you? Do you have a plan in place for bible engagement this year? I'd love to hear about it!
I'm a blog-at-home mom who writes because my sanity depends on it. I'm a Jesus-lover, family gal, coffee addict, recovering hoarder in a small New England town that bears a suspiciously close resemblance to "Stars Hallow" (and if you know where that is, we're friends already!). I am working towards simple living, one step at a time.
If you're curious about the name of my blog, you can find out more here. Thanks for stopping by!
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