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It wasn't audible, but it was certainly palpable.
Up until that point, I had not read God's Word. Yes, I had read passages, done countless bible studies, memorized a few scriptures...
But, I had never sat down to read the Bible.
I did not know where to start. The thought just seemed too overwhelming.
However, when the call came, I felt it. I knew it. I had to do it.
The call was a pressing nudge. Not forceful or demanding.
Nervously, I reached out to a few friends in late December asking them to read the Bible with me. I needed accountability. I knew I would NEVER finish if I did not have someone walking alongside me on this seemingly daunting journey.
To my surprise, the handful of friends quickly jumped in. Little did I know that God had been calling them as well.
Those few friends invited more friends. By January 1, 2012, we had a few hundred girls that had the same calling to read God's Word.
The first few days, I would email all of the girls the reading plan and then discussions along with it
With two small kids, and a third child under my roof during that time as well, I could not keep up with the emailing and adding of emails to our new SHINE Girls group.
On January 3rd, shortly after we started our reading, I sat down on the floor of my room. Laptop on my knees. I prayed that God would help me to be able to continue this. It felt overwhelming. It felt like too much.
My exact words to the Lord were this, "God, you called me to this. Open a door for me to continue. I cannot keep this up. The demands of my home, husband and kids are just too much. Help!"
A few minutes later, a thought came to my mind.
I was already blogging for my family because I loved to write. So, now, I would just start blogging our reading plan and discussions!
It took about 5 minutes for me to create this blog.
I sent an email out to the girls, directed them to the blog, and that is how it all began.
Here we are, 8 years later, and the calling is still alive and well.
For all of us.
We are all called to read God's Word. We are all called to know Him. Intimately.
Life gets busy. Demands press.
The calling remains....
God's Word is our bread of life.
It is our source of wisdom, peace, joy, discernment, prayer, faith, understanding.
Without it, we cannot be fully walking in His plan for us.
He instructs us in His Word. He teaches us. He molds us. He shapes us.
When I look back over the years at the posts on this blog, my heart is truly overwhelmed by the changes that have taken place in my own life.
Not just the physical changes, but the changes in my heart. My soul. My mind.
I am not the same person I was in 2012.
Praise the Lord for that!
And, the good news is, I am still changing. He is still molding and shaping me.
For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires. Hebrews 4:12
Read that scripture one more time.
When we read His Word, it puts a mirror to our hearts, our motives, our desires.
We see the Truth when we read His Word.
Without His Word, we don't have Truth. We have a mirage of what we "think" is truth.
Friends, I still feel this same calling so deeply in my soul.
The calling to read His Word together.
Maybe you have been with us since day one, maybe you are new reader. Whatever the case, we are so glad you are here.
Accountability is key.
Grab some friends and do this together.
Meet weekly, or monthly...or keep up via email and text.
Just stay accountable.
Grab a little notebook and write down scriptures God highlights for you.
You will love looking back on these pages one day to see God's Hand directing your steps.
This year, we will continue the same plan we started at the beginning of 2019.
I love to hold the Bible in my hands when I read, but some of you prefer it online. Either way, find a way that suits you best.
The Bible Plan we are following is a One year bible. It has a daily devotional, and then a few chapters a day to read. Every 7 days or so is a reflection day, with no reading. A good to to catch up if you fall behind. :)
You can find it here on Amazon.
I have just discovered that they do not offer the bible plan online anymore. So, if you do not want to purchase, I am happy to post the plan here on the blog.
Will you join me again this year?
I need His Word more than I need air.
I am betting you do as well.
To get us started, here is this weeks plan:
1/1: Genesis 1-2
1/2: Genesis 3-5
1/3: Genesis 6-9
1/4: Genesis: 10-12
1/5: Genesis: 12-14
1/6: Genesis 15-17
1/7: Reflect & Rest
Let's do this,