Let’s Do This Together – 31 Days in the Bible
Something had been on my heart lately and in a time of praying for The Paradox Church this was my plea to our Father:
“I want our people to know you, God—your bigness and love; your glory and your grace. I want their hearts dripping, saturated with the glory and grace of Jesus that it might then be saturated in our homes, our neighborhoods, our campuses, our work, this city.”
I want our collective hearts to be warmed by the truth of Jesus, I want our minds captivated so that our love would abound more and more for Him, for one another, and for the lost. God has called The Paradox Church to saturate Fort Worth with the glory and grace of Jesus—there is a city full of people all around us who are broken, lost, and don’t know there is a big God with big grace. And our hearts won’t be warm to them until they are warm to Him.
Nothing can replace the regular reading of God’s word as our primary way to commune with Him. According to Pew Research, 60% of Christians wish they read the bible more—even though, on average, we have 4.4 bibles in our homes. Yet, only 25% read the bible four or more times a week.
So, for the month of August, I want us to read together.
For 31 days, every morning, I want us to read the same chapter of the bible. I want us to plead with God, asking him to revive our hearts to Him, to one another, and to our non-Christian friends—the skeptic, the Muslim, the atheist, those far from God.
I am sure of this, that God is going to move mightily in and through us this Fall. But just as important, I just want you to know Him more—I want our hearts tender to the love of Jesus and our minds enthralled by the glory of Jesus. Please join me.
Can you give some tips on how to read my bible?
- It’s not a textbook, and there is no test. You can’t master the bible and you won’t understand everything. Even what you do understand, you won’t know the depths of. So just read it. The God of the Universe has spoken, and He loves you.
- Ask it questions. When you read a chapter (or verse) of the bible, ask questions of it like you would in any conversation with someone. What does this say about God? What is God like? What does God do? What does it say about me? What is it asking me to do? Am I supposed to rejoice? Repent? Cry out? What does obedience to this text look like?
- Read. Journal. Pray. When you read the bible, often a phrase or word or verse or idea or concept will stand out. Write that down. Meditate on it. Pray through it. Journal your thoughts. In journaling, you are continuing a conversation with God that He started. It doesn’t have to be pretty, it doesn’t have to be right, it doesn’t have to be long. Talk with God.
- Share with your community. Do you have a question about something you read? Ask someone in your City Group. Were you stirred by something? Don’t keep that to yourself, tell a co-worker. Engage people with what you read like you would share a good conversation you had last night with a friend the next day.
Is there an easy way to read on the go?
Yes there is. We updated our official church app to incorporate the reading plan directly in the app. This way you can go to one spot to catch up on sermons, access the songs we sang on Sunday, and now join in on the reading plan. When you open the app, select Bible from the bottom menu and then Reading Plan.
Why does it have to be in the morning?
We’re not trying to be legalistic about this, but there’s just something about the morning. For millennia, saints have found morning devotionals to be the best practice. I know some of you work at night. I know some of you have young children. Will you commit to this anyway? If we can do Whole 30, we can do this for 31 days.
- He wakens me morning by morning (Isaiah 50:4).
- In the morning my prayer comes before you (Psalm 88:13).
- My voice You shall hear in the morning, O LORD (Psalm 5:3).
- Awake, my soul! I will awaken the dawn (Psalm 57:8).
Ask God when He wants to wake you. Then be willing to get up when He does.
What if I miss a morning?
Jesus still loves you. Jump back in the next day.
This should be easy, right?
No. The enemy does not want you to do this. Every time you open your bible it’s an act of war. Your mind will wander, your kids will get up early, you’ll be in a bad mood—you’re picking up the Sword (Eph. 6:17), expect the enemy to fight back.
Do you have any resources to help me?
Here are a few, and we will be sending more out each week:
- How to Read the Bible for Yourself
- 6 Ways to Teach Your Kids the Bible
- 5 Strategies for Daily Bible Reading
- Keep Looking — The Life Changing Secret of Reading the Bible
What chapters do we read?
We’ll hand out a bookmark on Sunday with the schedule for you, but here it is for your reference as well:
Aug 1 – Philippians 1
Aug 2 – Philippians 2
Aug 3 – Philippians 3
Aug 4 – Philippians 4
Aug 5 – Philippians 1
Aug 7 – John 1
Aug 8 – John 2
Aug 9 – John 3
Aug 10 – John 4
Aug 11 – John 5
Aug 12 – John 6
Aug 14 – John 7
Aug 15 – John 8
Aug 16 – John 9
Aug 17 – John 10
Aug 18 – John 11
Aug 19 – John 12
Aug 21 – Psalm 1
Aug 22 – Psalm 16
Aug 23 – Psalm 27
Aug 24 – Psalm 13
Aug 25 – Psalm 63
Aug 26 – Psalm 145
Aug 28 – Philippians 1
Aug 29 – Philippians 2
Aug 30 – Philippians 3
Aug 31 – Philippians 4
Why are we taking Sundays off?
Because Sundays are when we read the same verses in the bible together already.
We should celebrate this at the end, shouldn’t we?
Yup! We will fast on August 31st together and then gather that evening at 3101 Race Street (the Riverside Baptist Church building) at 6:30pm for an hour of prayer, musical worship, and communion. Child care will be available to those who register for it.