Three years ago about this time, I posted this. "This year I'm going to do it," I said - read all the way through the Bible. I wanted to go all the way through my ESV Study Bible (see what it looks like at ChristianBook.com) and read the whole text and the study notes. Not to far into my quest, I also decided to read the notes from my NIV Study Bible (here it is at CBD) and get a second perspective on things. The plan was good, the materials were just what I wanted, and I made some great progress. In fact, I made it more than halfway through the Bible that year (read my end-of-year wrap-up here), and in the long run I made it clear into the Minor Prophets before I completely fizzled out. We moved out of our house into a smaller apartment, the spot where I could read wasn't as conducive to peace and quiet, and whatever other reasons there might be took the wind completely out of my sails. At this point, if I picked that program back up where I left off, I would be totally in the dark about what I was doing.
So this year I decided to start over. This time, instead of doing it the "Give yourself a self-taught college-level Bible survey class" way, I decided to go with the "Get in, get it done, and get out Bible ninja" method. I still don't have a satisfactory Bible Study spot, but I think I can carve out a few minutes at bedtime every night. And I have a smartphone. It's got Bible apps. Bible apps have reading plans. In fact, I've used a couple of the shorter YouVersion reading plans before... why not jump in with one of the long-term plans?
So that's what I'm doing. I selected the plan based on The One Year Bible; it seemed straightforward enough. It's linked to the NLT version, which is generally not my preferred translation but it's easy to get through.
And that's my goal for this year: get through all of the parts of the whole Bible. Read the whole thing. In my previous try I was hoping to get a pretty deep understanding of how the Bible fits together - I did get that understanding, to an extent, and the parts that I made it through should feel a bit like old friends now. This time I just want to experience the Bible on its own, without trying to hard to learn every detail. Some things about history and context I should remember; other things I certainly will not. But I have a lifetime to go back over that stuff. This year I just want to make it all the way through. And with the help of some 21st-century technology (the Internet and a smartphone) I think I can make it happen!