trying to read through the Bible

In November I set a goal: read through the Bible by the end of the year.

I can’t remember when I started, but I’m almost a third of the way through, in 2 Kings.

It’s been good to do. Most of what I’ve been reading has been story. Even the rules lists have been okay, kind of like story problems only without the math. It has been interesting to see the patterns of behavior: God says something. people do it. people forget. God doesn’t.

The gory parts I haven’t worried about this time. I mean, I’ve read them but I haven’t been in the mode of “that’s awful; how could God do/allow that.” I’m reading the story.

I’ll tell you what I’m wondering about, though. The poetry. In a few books, I’ll be at the poems and the proverbs. They don’t lend themselves to 20 pages a day. I mean, I can’t quite imagine setting a goal to read through T.S. Eliot at 20 pages a day. Doesn’t work. So why should I do that with David’s poems, just to meet a goal that I set?

The Bible isn’t all one book. It’s a collection of 66 documents. Some are letters. Some are historical chronicles. Some are biographies. Some are predictions. To try to maintain a consistent pace through all of them seems–now that I’m in the middle of this project–ill-advised.

So I’ll do what I can. I may skip past the psalms and come back to them. I may make them a January project, (5 a day for 30 days covers all 150). I may just treat them as poetry to savor and consider.

In the meantime, I’m having to learn about discipline. Not the discipline that says, “read a certain amount a day” but the discipline to decide why exactly I am reading everything else.