How can you read the Bible more often this year? Perhaps you have made it your New Year’s resolution to read more Scripture this year. Or perhaps you want to read through the Bible from start to finish in one year.
These are great goals, but you need a real plan if you want to succeed. Desires ebb and flow, so to read the Bible more often, here are three practical tips that might really help you.
Set Daily Objectives to Read the Bible More Often
Reading the Bible “more” is good but vague. I like to distinguish the difference between a goal and an objective. When I think of a “goal,” this refers to a general desire like, “I want to read the Bible more often this year.” But when I think of an objective, this refers to a measurable outcome that you gauge with tangible evidence, “I will read five pages of Scripture every day.”
When you set a measurable goal, it means you can keep yourself accountable. When you say you will read the Bible more, it’s hard to truly gauge this on a daily bases. But when you say you will read 5 pages or 10 pages of Scripture every day, you can clearly know when you are on track or off track.
Getting a daily reading plan can also be very helpful if you want to set a measurable Bible reading goal. I try to read through the Old Testament at least once a year and the New Testament two or three times per year. Of course I will study individual passages of the Bible as well, but I find it deeply enriching to read the Bible cover to cover on a yearly bases.
You also want to set realistic goals and objectives that are attainable. While your heart may be in the right place if you say you are going to read 20 pages of Scripture a day even though you currently don’t read even one page per day, this goal will be very hard to accomplish. Setting daily goals that you can actually accomplish is far more helpful than setting lofty goals for the year that are huge and less likely to be accomplished.
Read the Bible More Often So You Can Teach and Share the Scriptures Better
Another very helpful way to increase your desire to read the Bible is to increase your desire to share the Bible with others. In other words, sometimes the best way to learn more is to teach others. When you are responsible for helping others learn more about the Bible, this will be a great way for you to read the Bible more yourself as well. Look at the link Paul showed Timothy between studying the word and being an effective teacher:
Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15)
“Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.” (1 Timothy 4:16 NIV)
While studying your Bible will make you a better teacher, a desire to be a better teacher will also cause you to read your Bible more often. Christians should read the Bible for their own benefit and to feed their relationship with God, but we should also read it so we can love and serve other people well too. Again, Paul said to Timothy, “Persevere in [watching your life and your doctrine closely], because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.” In other words, you should read the Bible for your own benefit and for the benefit of others.
Therefore, if you want to read the Bible more this year, perhaps you need to set measurable goals to teach and share God’s truth more. Perhaps you want to share one Bible verse a day on your social media channels. Perhaps you’ve been thinking about starting a blog where you can share what you are learning about God with other people. Or perhaps you are feeling led to lead a small group Bible study.
If you want to grow and read the Bible more often, it can be very beneficial to take on more responsibility in leading others in their spiritual growth as well.
Make Your Bible Reading Time and Place More Enjoyable
While there are many more spiritual ways to read the Bible better, we should not overlook the very practical ways you can increase your desire to read the Bible as well. As a human, your body is a part of who you are. While the Holy Spirit is ultimately responsible for causing humans to understand the Bible (John 16:13), you must also use your eyes, brain, and your physical abilities to take in the truths of God.
Therefore it would be a mistake to underestimate the time, place, setting, and other practical factors that go into your Bible reading times. If you are not getting enough sleep, if the setting you are studying in is not conducive to reading, or if there are some other distractions hindering your comprehension, this is not going to make you want to read your Bible more often.
You should choose the most enjoyable time of the day to read your Bible. I enjoy reading in the morning with a cup of coffee. You should choose a setting that has the right vibe for your personal preferences. Maybe you would find it a richer experience if you had some prayerful music playing as you read the Bible.
For more ideas on practical things you can do to read the Bible more often, you can read this article on prayer and apply these practical steps to Scripture reading, “What Should I Do If I Am Struggling to Pray? 4 Practical Things Jesus Did in Prayer.”
How to Read the Bible More Often This Year
Lastly, if you want to read the Bible more often this year, it helps to consistently remind yourself of the benefits regular Bible reading will bring you (James 1:25, 1 Timothy 3:16-17, Psalm 119:105, Hebrews 4:12, 1 Timothy 4:13, John 5:39-40).
It is a great goal to read the Bible more often, but you need a real plan. Think and pray about how you can read Scripture more consistently. Reading the Bible more often will feed your soul, enrich your life, and empower you to love God and people better.