Ryan is the Senior Pastor of Harvest Bible Chapel in Hickory, NC. He is the host of the "In The Room" podcast, and the author of 8 Hours, Or Less: Writing Faithful Sermons Faster.  

3 Ways To Get Back On Your Bible Reading Plan

We are nearing the end of February, so that means if you're like most followers of Jesus you've probably fallen a bit behind in your daily Bible reading. Hopefully you started the year strong with a time, a place, and a plan for daily Bible reading, but maybe you got busy, or maybe you got stuck in Leviticus and you've gotten off track. One of the times each year I find myself falling behind is when I go on vacation. If I'm not intentional, the absence of my normal daily routine results in falling a few days behind. This just happened to me last week and Saturday morning I found myself faced with the same decision we all face when we fall behind:

Will I find a way to get caught up, or will I simply give up?

All too often we choose to give up instead of getting caught up in the midst of our discouragement, but it need not be this way. In fact, I would argue that discouragement is not a necessary emotion when falling behind in your Bible reading plan. Remember, the goal is NOT the completion of the plan, but to spend time feasting on God's Word. So if you fall behind don't' get discouraged, simply determine to keep going.

Here's are 3 ways you can get back on your Bible reading plan when you fall behind...

1. Start Where You Are

You could simply re-start your plan right where you are. You may not finish on the day you previously planned, but again, completing the plan is not the ultimate goal. The only reason for any plan is to help aid you in regular reading. So, just start where you are.

2. All At Once

You could set aside the necessary time to power through all in one sitting. Depending on how far behind you are this may be the most simple solution for you. Because I was only a few days behind last week, this was the option I chose. However, if you're a few weeks, or even a month behind this may not be a feasible option. You may want to simply re-start where you are, or try reading two a day.

3. Read Two A Day

You may want to begin tackling two readings a day which over time you will result in you getting caught up. This is something I have to do a number of times a year and is typically the most sustainable way to get back on track.

So, if you're behind in your reading, will you get caught up, or simply give up? My hope is that you won't give up. Don't be discouraged, instead determine to stick with it. The goal is not to complete the plan, but to enjoy God's presence through the power of His Word. It's time to jump back in!

11 Tools I Never Want To Be Without

Monday Mind Dump