And so it begins… tomorrow

Tomorrow is March 25th, and what does that mean? It means it is the first day of the “Year in the Bible” year. Some folks may say resolutions are to be made January 1. But let’s ignore those people, people like Dick Clark and Ryan Seacrest. January 1 is in the midst of holidays and travel, and how often to we have the time to make such serious commitments and decisions then?

The beginning of Spring seems like a perfect time to make a resolution.

So for your consideration, make this year, from March 25th, 2012 to March 24th, 2013, a year to be in God’s Word. To abide in it, to listen to God, to seek out Jesus Christ. Be resolved to do something important–read the Bible, the whole Bible.

Through Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter, join with us as we break down the Scripture into quarters. Find someone to read with, get involved with a small group or a reading group, and let God reveal himself to you in his Word.

(And just so you know, if you don’t jump in right away, anytime is a good time to pick up your Bible and join in right where we are in the process!)

Having a Bible in your Pocket (or Purse)

I heard some questions about using apps on smarthphones and iPads. I think they are great since you’ve already got them with you, so you’re never without the Bible. And a big plus is that they are searchable. I have some Scripture committed to memory and a bit more that isn’t quite memorized, but I know where to find it. But there are plenty of times when I have an idea of what I’m looking for and just can’t remember where to look, and that’s when searching comes into play.

Bible apps, like Bible websites, allow you to find that passage you’re looking for or to do a word search and see all the places in the Bible where a word shows up. Want to know every time Abraham is mentioned? Search. Reading a passage and can’t remember who Eli is, search for the first time he comes up in Samuel.

So, if you haven’t taken advantage of these apps, here are a few (free) suggestions:

For iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad:

As mentioned, the version I like, and this has a great interface that makes it especially easy to browse between books of the Bible. It’ll show you the cross-references and notes, as well.

You can download several different translations from this app for offline use.

For Android:

No personal experience with this, so I’d appreciate any feedback about this app or other suggestions.

Clarification on When to Read What

You may be curious about the specifics of the Year in the Bible as its start date is steadily approaching. Let me offer some clarification in terms of the reading.

The readings are assigned on a weekly basis starting on Sundays. March 25th is the first day of the first week, so the readings would begin that day. The Reading Groups of that week would meet to talk about the readings assigned based on the most recent Sunday. For example, the Wednesday 6pm Reading Group would gather on March 28th to share from and talk about Genesis 1-17 and John 1-7.

If you are interested in a Reading Group or have questions, let me know. I’ll put up some more helpful hints later this week.

Reading List for First Quarter

We’re not yet into March, but here is a look at what we’ll be reading when we begin the week of March 25th. We’ll be doing weekly readings, rather than having daily assignments. This is meant to make the information a bit more manageable. Instead of having to remember which verse of which chapter of which book am I reading on which day–not even factoring in the mental calculations of missing days, you just remember the book and chapters you have that week. And I try to limit the number of books to three per week, and only infrequently will we go above that.

Reading plan Q1

Coming March 2012

After we finish the small group study, 40 Days in the Word, our church isn’t going to stop there. Forty days just isn’t enough.

Having learned new ways to study and understand scripture, we’re going to dive in and spend a year reading through the entire Bible. Here you’ll find reading guides and reminders, devotionals, and a place to ask questions and comment on the readings as we enter into this together.

Keep an eye out for more information.