We are at the beginning of a new year and for many, it is a time to attempt to make changes in their daily routines and habits. I have heard many Christians lament their inability to conduct regular devotions by reading the Bible either for lack of time or lack of a plan. I can’t do much about your time constraints but let me offer you what I believe to be a great plan to begin personal devotions.
Try this: read one chapter of the New Testament every weekday (Monday through Friday), two Psalms on Saturday, and one Psalm on Sunday plus your prayers. That’s all there is to it. Easy, don’t you think? Here is some specific information how to carry this out.
There are 261 weekdays this year. There are 260 chapters in the New Testament. So one chapter per weekday, and it’s almost an exact fit. What about the extra day? Remember, this is Jan. 2 so your extra day is covered. But don’t be afraid to make this guide your own and catch up for yesterday: Take the longest chapter in the New Testament, which is Luke 1 (80 verses), and divide it roughly in half–one day, 1:1-38; the next day, 1:39-80–and you come out at 261.
As for reading the Psalms on the weekends, there are 52 Saturdays and 52 Sundays this year. If you do two Psalms on Saturdays and one Psalm on Sundays, you end up with 156 Psalms. But there are only 150 Psalms. So you might do what I’m going to do: Take the longest psalm, Psalm 119 (176 verses), and divide it into seven sections, treating each section as a psalm: 119:1-24, 25-48, 49-72, 73-96, 97-120, 121-144, and 145-176. That way you come out at 156.
A simple format to follow each day is this:
There, that doesn’t sound too bad, does it? What I have learned is, as with developing all habits, the toughest is always at the beginning in creating the routine for this devotion to be done regularly. Once you get two to three weeks in you will find yourself looking forward to the time you have set aside for the reading of God’s Word and it’s easy from then on.
Here’s one new year’s resolution that will bear much good fruit.