A week ago Sunday, I was presented with a fascinating opportunity to read through the book of 1st John1st John for 10 days straight. I found this to be quite an interesting proposition, as I had not taken a challenge quite like this before. I’ve done the read through the bible in a year challenge. I’ve also read through in shorter periods with various formats. I’ve participated in the monthly 31-day challenge of reading through Proverbs in months where there are 31 days in it. What I have found to be quite rewarding about this 10 day 1st John reading challenge is amazing to put it mildly.
This particular challenge is focused on reading 1st John Chapters 1 through 5, once a day for ten days. During this process, you are to take note of the themes and words that jump out at you; especially on days 6 and 7 which you may have missed on the first couple of days, either by journaling them or making marks in the borders of your bible or wherever you see fit. The person who made the challenge to me stated that he was challenged to do this, with the warning that the natural inclination might be to give up by day seven because of familiarity or fatigue. The reward or promise was that if successful in completing the task, you’d begin to see things quite differently than you had previously.
Reading is Better Together: One of the first things that comes to my mind about this reading challenge is that it has been quite a more enjoyable journey by having other who are with me in the process. Sometimes, it the thought of having to do something by yourself that can be more challenging than the challenge itself. It’s probably the reason why there are so many book clubs throughout the United States. Having others in the process makes it more enjoyable in the sense that as you pick up on certain things and others pick up on other things when you come together and share those thoughts, you add greater value to the readings. That gives you encouragement to continue and even gives you things to go back and look for on your next read through.
Repetition Reveals Things You Miss: Suffice it to say that when you are reading, it’s likely that you don’t see everything or understand everything the first time through. Reading the bible can be as challenging to some people, especially if you’re still into reading the traditional King James Version. It’s like trying to read the collected works of William Shakespeare. It’s not the natural way in which we speak, so when you read through something, you often have to go back over things. What’s interesting about this challenge is that each day that I read through each chapter my attention is drawn to something that stands out, that I have either missed or makes something else I read become more prominent and meaningful to me.
Repetition Reinforces Things You’ve Gained: There is an assurance that comes in repetitious reading. When you read something, there are times when you may not be sure that you understand what you think you understand. Reading repetitiously allows for confirmation of whether you really got it down.
I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this reading challenge. I’m day 8 into this 10 day challenge and it has not only strengthened my own beliefs, but challenged my faith to go deeper into areas that I have been not as focused on. 1st John is a book that speaks to the followers of Christ as an encouragement in tough times. I hope that if this has intrigued you, you’ll decide to take up the challenge yourself and even share your own discoveries. It’s my goal that at the end of this ten day challenge, that I will, with more specificity share the nuggets of the experience. Whatever challenges you’ve accepted this year, I pray that they have proven to be rewarding to you and to the things you hope to achieve this year.
QUESTION: Have you ever done the 1st John Reading Challenge? If not, what reading challenges have you done, and what did you learn as a result of it?