I grew up in church, so I participated in a few different “read the Bible” challenges. One of my favorites was where we got points based on how many chapters we read. If you want to get the most points, you have to be strategic. Don’t just read straight through. You have to find the shortest chapters – like Psalm 117. It’s like 3 verse long. Plus, there are a few books that are only 1 chapter each. MEGA points!
The worst chapter in the Bible is Psalm 119: it’s 176 verses long! Longer than quite a few whole books. Psalm 119 was kryptonite for us as kids trying to earn points. You could read that chapter for DAYS and not finish it.
Obviously, that’s probably not the best way to read the Bible. But I find a lot of us don’t really have a better plan. We approach the Bible basically like we approach every other book – read it start to finish, try to learn all the stuff in it. It’s like the textbook for heaven.
As I got older, I began to understand the Bible was a way to access God’s guidance for me. But again, how? My friends and I came up with an idea: we would pray, then open the Bible and point at a verse. We hoped God would lead us to the right verse.
To be clear, that is 100% magic and if you’re thinking, “Wow does that actually work?” the answer is No, no that’s also not how the Bible works.
The good news is that you don’t have to read the Bible like a textbook and you don’t have to treat it like a horoscope. The Bible is a pathway for us to know God, to be transformed.