I am officially a fan of the YouVersion Bible App. I’ve had it and have been using it for years, but I’ve only recently realised the beauty and power of its shared Bible reading plan feature.
I’ve been meeting up with a guy going through ‘Just for Starters’ and last week, we spent a bit of time exploring what it means to ‘Listen to God – chapter 4’. At the end, we were even more convinced of our need to hear from God everyday, but we expressed disappointment at falling short of our personal expectation for daily devotions. So, I suggested we do a Bible reading plan together to keep each other accountable. I’ve been working through the Mc’Cheyne Bible Reading Plan on the YouVersion App on my own, hence I sort of knew how the reading plan feature on the app worked. We browsed through some of the plans available, and settled on a 7-day devotional by John Piper titled ‘Hearing God Speak’. We agreed that we would spend time everyday reading the prescribed passage and a short Devotional Content accompanying the passage, and send each other a text message (a functional made available through the app) indicating that we’ve done that. I wasn’t entirely sure it would work, but I thought we’d give it a shot.
We are now 6-days into it and it has been fantastic. I’m not so much concerned about the length of the plan, but the process throughout. Everyday at 10am, either one of us will be the first to send a message telling the other that we’ve finished reading. Whenever I get the message, I think to myself ‘oh man, I need to get my game up!’ So I drop everything that I do and settle down to spend time reading and meditating. What a powerful thing it is to know that someone else is walking with you as both of you hear from God’s Word from the same passage!
I’m convinced that every Christian needs to take hearing God’s voice daily seriously and invest in helping one another do that well (what better way to love one another than to point them to God!) in order that we be disciples who are genuinely soaked in the Word and have God’s Word inform every facet of our lives.
So if you’re like us and struggle with the discipline of daily devotion, I encourage you to grab a friend and work through a reading plan together. You can start with something short like a 7-day reading plan and build into something longer (there are options like 30-day plans to Bible in a year plans). What’s important is that you’re spending time everyday hearing God’s voice.
‘How I love your teaching! It is my meditation all day long. Your command makes me wiser than my enemies, for it is always with me. I have more insight than all my teachers because Your decrees are my meditation. I understand more than the elders because I obey Your precepts. I have kept my feet from every evil path to follow Your Word. I have not turned from Your judgements, for you Yourself have instructed me. How sweet Your word is to my taste – sweeter than honey to my mouth.’ Psalm 119: 97-103