2020 is quickly approaching and that means looking back at 2019 and reflecting on all you went through and then looking ahead at 2020 the year to come. Maybe you are someone who does New Year’s resolutions or goals and you really want this upcoming year to be your best one yet. Perhaps you are someone who does not make any goals and just wings it living life one day at a time- that is great too!
I want to encourage you this next year, whatever your plans are to do this one thing every day. Take intentional time, set aside for reflection, quiet time with God, meditation, and prayer. This will look different for each person but if you honestly want this next year to be your best one yet you NEED to do this.
If you are a believer in Jesus Christ and you have a personal relationship with him but struggle to read your Bible or even know where to begin that’s ok, I want to help you. If you are a new believer or someone who has been a Christian for a short time in life but doesn’t really know what to read or you feel intimidated by the Bible I want to help you. Finally, if you are someone who has never read the Bible or you don’t really know where to start I want to help you.
I want to reassure you that you are not alone in any of this. I struggle with reading my Bible daily and although I try hard to make it a priority in my life, I find that some days life gets in my way and the things of this world come first (as awful as that is to admit it is true). What I notice is that the days I don’t read or focus on God’s truth those are the days I struggle the most. I am more impatient with my kids and spouse, my attitude is worse towards everything, my mindset is off and I overall seem to look in all the wrong places for my satisfaction, contentment, and hope.
But do not lose heart, God is greater than any of our biggest failures, he just wants a relationship with us. Really good relationships (the ones where people really know and love you from the heart) take time and effort. So I have a few ways in which I want to encourage you and help you find the best way to grow in your relationship with our amazing God. I have included below a variety of annual, monthly or daily reading plans, some great online resources, apps and more that I hope will be a great starting point for you this upcoming year.
These are tools recommended by so many different people, plans and apps I have used and are currently using to help me deepen my relationship with God. I have found all of them to be really helpful when life is crazy and I need reminding of God’s love and his truth on a daily basis. I hope these resources will help you strengthen your relationship with our Savior and grow in true wisdom, understanding, joy, and peace.
Bible Reading Plans
Each one of these plans was taken from a different online resource, author and publisher with the full rights to use them. Please feel free to download them and use them as a guide to your daily devotions!
1. The Entire Bible in one year
These plans will encompass reading the entire bible in one year. Check them out!
2. Chronological Reading Plan
Read the Bible through in the order it was originally written (meaning the books will not be in the same order as the Bible’s table of context). A fun way to read God’s Word if you want a new reading style.
3. New Testament Reading Plan
This is the perfect plan for busy moms, new believers or people who might just be reading the Bible for the first time. Maybe you want to start off with something simple and easy and then grow in time. Sometimes it is not about the amount of time in the word but the repetition and saturation of the words that really matter.
4. Historical Reading Plan
This plan is best for the History buff or just someone looking to be more logical in their reading. Try this 1-year reading plan for looking at the bible in a historically accurate plan that takes you on a journey in a whole new way.
5. Thematic Reading Plan
Read the Bible is a way you never have before by making connections with the big Bible stories you know and focusing on major themes throughout the Bible. It’s a great place to start if you are looking for a specific theme like love or joy.
6. New Christian Reading Plan
If don’t know where to start when reading the Bible this is the best place to begin! Check out this easy and simple 30-day reading plan that is sure to start you in the right direction as you begin to spend time with your Savior.
Top 3 Apps for Reading/Studying the Bible
Go deeper in your relationship with God and use apps to study God’s Word, connect with others and be reminded throughout the day of God’s truths from his word. I know life gets busy so thankfully technology can be used to help us deepen our relationship with God as well. How many times do we look at our phones, scroll through social media or browse the internet for something- probably more than we would like to admit- me too! But why not have God’s Word be something that chimes in your life on a regular daily basis- not something to just swipe by but something to look at, read and saturate our minds with. Doing this will help us keep the right perspective and know where our hope is found, who has things under control and where we need to keep our focus. Personally this year I really want to saturate my life with God’s Word and this is a great place to start.
1. You Version- Bible App This app has SO many great features, it offers thousands of reading plans you can do by yourself or with friends, a verse of the day, beautiful verse images, the bible in entirety with over 2,000 versions available in 1,371 languages. It really is the all in one best app I love it and highly recommend it!
2. Bible Study Together This app is another great tool to use for daily reading. It’s very simple (you can even listen to it if you don’t have time to sit and read). It offers great study journal questions after you read, a challenge to put your faith into practice and then a short video to watch if you have time. It’s an excellent choice for any mom!
3. First 5 – This app comes from Proverbs 31 ministries and offers a variety of amazing plans that go through some of the books of the Bible and other topical studies. You can order their study books to go along with your reading or you can just do the daily reading (which is a blog-style along with scripture). You can also join groups doing a study or create your own and invite others to connect with you as you do a study together! Overall it is one of my favorite apps for going deeper into God’s Word!
One more thing to keep in mind there is no greater joy than having that peaceful feeling of serenity and security sweep over your heart when you are in God’s Word. Somedays when you read the Bible those words will penetrate your heart immediately, they will be the exact words you needed to hear on that day, in that moment or situation and that amazing joyful feeling will sweep over you as you are filled with a thankful happy heart.
Other times when reading it might feel like you didn’t get much out of your reading, that it was just words on a page or screen but they did not apply or feel relevant to you at that moment. Do NOT lose heart, sometimes what we read is not meant for us in that exact moment, it is like snow it falls down and lightly sits on top and stays there. But, when things heat up in life, and they will, that snow melts and penetrates the ground saturating and watering it exactly where it needs it most. So do not ever think the words you are reading don’t mean something. They always do and they can be used or can be remembered at a later time or a different moment when you really need them. God’s Word is amazing like this and by spending intentional time with him and in his Word, you will get to know him and hear the greatest love story ever told.
Finally, I want to share with you a printable that is filled with 24 days of encouragement. Something you can print off and visually look at on a daily basis- maybe even read the verses out loud to your kids each day and then mark off the day together. I want YOU to be encouraged but also your kids, your family, friends, neighbors, a new mom or anyone you might know that could use some encouragement in their life. Print it, frame it, give it as a gift to someone who is hurting or just needs some loving words when you might not know what to say- so go ahead and use it and be encouraged by it.
FREE ENCOURAGEMENT PRINTABLE
I sincerely hope that 2020 is your best year yet! I truly want you to take time each day to grow in your relationship with Jesus and that because of it your life will change forever! The Bible is the greatest love story ever and a real relationship with Christ leads to eternal life in heaven. If you want to read more about our purpose or want to know more about us check out our other pages, we have lots of great stuff on our site!
Keep being awesome moms- you can do it! Have a great start to the New Year everyone!