I have learned that when it comes to any outdoor endeavor, setting a goal is one of the best things I can do. It forces me to make my time in the field purposeful. The same principle has proven itself true when it comes to disciplining myself in my Bible reading.
“The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.” Proverbs 21:5
It’s interesting that we forget that diligently planning to achieve a goal in our scripture reading can help us develop a much more profitable time spent there.
By setting scripture reading goals, we establish a road map for our life of study. When you read, what are you looking for? How are you absorbing the scripture’s value? You can begin setting a scripture reading goal by following these steps:
- Choose a Text to Study. Be Specific.
- Set a Realistic Date and Time to Begin Your Goal.
- Set A Realistic Date and TIme to Complete Your Goal.
- Tell Someone That will Hold You Accountable About Your Goal.
Choose a Text To Study. Be Specific.
When you are deciding on a scripture reading goal, choose a text that is appealing to you. You may be interested in the historical writings of the old testament, or you may want a more in-depth study about the fledgling church in the book of acts. Whatever it is, choose a text, not a topic, and go for it!
Choosing a specific text to study will keep you from running down rabbit trails while you study the way a topical study can. The goal of studying a specific text is to understand context, use that understanding to gather the author’s purpose, identify the primary idea of the text, and apply that primary idea. This leaves little time for “chasing rabbits”. Staying focused is critical to achieving our goal.
Setting Realistic Start and End Dates
Start and End Dates are the bookends of your goal. They are built in accountability. Making them realistic is critical. Saying, “I’m going to cover the entire book of Isaiah in one week” is vague and most likely unachievable for most people. A successful goal looks more like, “I would like to spend 30 minutes per day beginning on Sunday this week, studying Isaiah 53, and complete that study on the following Sunday”. This well-focused approach establishes a pattern and scope that will allow you to be more efficient and committed to your goal.
I am always amazed at what happens when I share my goals with others. There is a built in sense of “must do” when you vocalize your goal. This could even be a way to study God’s word with another person. I recommend telling this person what your specific goal is and asking them to check in periodically to make sure you are pursuing the completion of your goal.
“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.” – Zig Ziglar
I’ve never met a Christian that didn’t want a more meaningful time in God’s word. What’s painful to me is that I’ve also experienced so many that have never been taught how to study God’s word for themselves. Setting a study goal is the first step toward a flourishing time with God during your day.
Hunting season is a perfect time to set a new scripture reading goal! Use your time in the field to maximize your focus and cover some major ground in your study! Is there a practice you have adopted that has helped energize your Bible study? Share your idea below!
I want to help you get your first goal started! Click the link to download my free PDF template! My Hunting Season Scripture Goal