Monday, March 22, 2010

Day 81

When I checked my email this morning I could not believe it was day 81. It was going to be different this time. I was going to keep up and follow through.

I heard about The Bible in 90 Days challenge at Christmas. The reading plan is designed to give you a big picture view of the work of God through the Bible. It really does too. Reading straight through the Old Testament in a short amount of time does make things come together. I thought it would be a great way for me to get out of my funk, have direction in my quiet time and learn a lot.

I was telling my Grandma about my plans in January. At 89 years old, she doesn't mince words. She said I've read the Bible cover to cover many times and I don't know why you'd want to do it that way! It kind of took the wind out of my sails. But I was still determined.

I plunged in whole heartedly, happily checking off each day's box. Guess where I am on Day 81 when I should be in Romans? I'm on day 45, right at the end of Psalms.

Because what I didn't know was that in the middle of January a lot of things would change in my life, the details of which I am still planning to share. With all that was going on, I couldn't keep up on my reading and I felt like I failed. I failed God again.

As usual, my Grandma was right. God doesn't have a timeline. His plan and sovereignty are bigger than my schedule. He knew exactly where I would be in January 2010. He knew what I would need. Each day as I have trudged along with my reading, I have encountered verses that were just what I needed for that day. Verses containing truths that transformed my thinking. Sometimes I've needed to take extra time to think about what those verses really mean and couldn't plow through all the chapters.

Especially meaningful for me was the consistent grace and forgiveness God offered the Israelites and this verse in Psalms when I needed patience and perspective.
"For a thousand years in your sight
are like a day that has just gone by,
or like a watch in the night."
Psalm 90:4
Instead of being down and frustrated, I think I need to rejoice in God's plan. It's easy to become rigid and legalistic about the things we want or feel like we should do. Even though my plan would seem good to anyone, except apparently my Grandma, it didn't seem to be in God's plan.

Surprisingly I haven't given up. I'm continuing on with my reading. I know that this is where I should be: in His word. It just might end up being the Bible in 120 or 180 days for me. And if that's the timing God has for me, I wouldn't want it any other way.