A 90 Day Challenge

What controls you?

When I’m honest with myself, some days it’s my Netflix queue. Some days, my to-do list at work. I imagine some people might say video games or food or that red ping alert from Facebook.

I tell you what, though, I want to be controlled by God’s Spirit. And I know that one of the ways I make myself available to God is by reading Scripture. So one of the things I want to do this summer is to read through the whole Bible in 90 days.

Wait, seriously? The whole thing? I just thought that out loud on the interwebs? It sounds hard. But maybe it isn’t. Maybe I’m just psyching myself out. I bet it can be done.

Why do this?

Because we are we what we eat, right? Did your mom tell you this, too? Twice in the Bible, somebody (it’s the prophet Ezekiel and disciple John) is told to literally eat a scroll that has God’s word on it. In both cases, it’s about internalizing God’s Word, making it a very part of your being. While we might not eat pages for breakfast, we feed our souls on this stuff. And something that has been outside of us becomes the substance of who we are. That’s pretty wild when I think about it.

Another reason is because Scripture is a weapon against sin. When Jesus is tempted in the desert, he comes back at Satan with words from Deuteronomy. One of the psalmists writes, “I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.” Scripture helps us make good decisions. When we’re confronted with temptation, Scripture gives us the power to say “no.” It changes us and makes us more holy people. I don’t know about you, but I really need that.

How do we do this?

The first word is “intentional.” We have to have a plan. So here’s a reading schedule I’ve found. I’m actually using the YouVersion app on my iPhone for this. If you have access to this app, just look for the 90 day reading plan. And then I’ve picked out a translation that has audio available and that way I can listen to it. If you prefer reading, I recommend a translation like the New Living Translation or The Message that’s easily readable for long passages.

The second part of being intentional is naming what I have to cut out of my life. I’ve learned in life that I can’t do everything, so to add something substantial, something else falls by the wayside. And if I don’t intentionally figure this out beforehand, I’ll end up dropping something from my life that I didn’t want to drop.

So, for me, I anticipate this might take 45 minutes. I typically sift through blog posts pertaining to pop culture news and fantasy baseball tips at the end of my day, and it usually takes that amount of time. For the summer, I’ll replace that (as much as I enjoy it) with God’s Word at the end of my day.

Lastly, I need a regular rhythm, so naming a place and time every day. Since I plan to end my day with it, I’ll take my regular bed time, rewind the clock back about 45 minutes, and that’s when I’m doing it. I’ll set an alarm, if I need to.

We’ll see if this works. Who knows… I may just find myself more easily lead by God’s Spirit. I have a hunch I’ll be different at the end of this. I have hunch I may experience God in a new way. What do you think? Who’s with me?


About peterjwhite

I am a pastor to college students in Tulsa, OK.
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