Friends! Any procrastinators out there? I thought I was at a professional, proficient level until three recent occurrences taught me otherwise…
I’ve been a practicing procrastinator since college. (Scary math: thirty-six years ago. Oh my.) Pulling all-nighters, accompanied by more than one human’s caffeine quota should allow, I scrambled thru’ four years of college with so-so passing grades.
This past April, a new friend of John’s sent him a One Year Bible published by the folks at Walk Through the Bible, called The Daily Walk Bible: Explore God’s Path to Life. This Bible is in the New International Version. Ever the optimist, John jumped in regardless of the fact that January was way in the past.
I have several friends who’ve read thru’ the Bible in a year’s time, some more than once. I confess I’ve successfully avoided it until now. Plus, I concluded that if, and that’s a big IF I were to attempt such, I’d much prefer to read it in the New Living Translation.
I toted John’s new Bible with me when I visited Liz Curtis Higgs one day, showing it to her. I was relieved to discover she was in the same boat as me, not having bitten the bullet to take on such a project. She was also in agreement that if she did jump in, she, too, would prefer the New Living Translation.
Fast forward to Mother’s Day weekend. Gordy and Lauren were in town and the one request I uttered was for Gordy to go thru’ his college “stuff”, still in his old room. (Trying to be tactful here.)
The piles stressed me out every time I walked by his room. (He might have a few procrastinator skills in him too given he’s been out of college six years.)
Mission accomplished, all he left for me to go thru’ was a pile of books. Later that day, I divvied them up into books to be taken to the Christian Book Nook (They’re at 2116 S. Preston St. in Louisville.), while the others will be donated to the Little Free Libraries in town.
When I reached the bottom of the pile, one super thick book stopped me in my tracks. Get ready for this: It was The One Year Bible. Guess which version? Oh yes, it was in the New Living Translation.
Having no recollection of having bought this book, I opened the first page. There, in my Mother’s handwriting, was her name: Anita Mills. I nearly dropped it like a hot potato.
I dashed down the stairs to show John. He said, “Wow, now what are you going to do?”
“Well,” I hesitated, “I may start in 2019.”
Now on a roll of decluttering, I made one more round of checking for books to donate or sell, stopping in Woody’s old room. I found a few to clear out the shelves, stopping at a thin, purple, paperback book. This time I gasped when I read the cover: No More Excuses! An almost too-practical guide to reading through your Bible—Especially for Women by Pam Gillaspie.
“What?” I hollered out loud, now rushing down the stairs again to show John. We then opened the title page, and Pam, the author, had signed the book for me, see below:
I have zero recollection of this book, either, much less how these books have been in our house for nearly eight years without my knowing about them. Either my Mom is shouting down from Heaven to me, or the Lord is saying, “It is time you read my Word ALL THE WAY THROUGH.”
John grinned and said, “NOW what are you going to do?”
To which I’m ashamed to say, I replied, “I’ll think about it.” (CAN YOU SAY, “STUBBORN-AS-A-MULE?”)
The following day I drove to Lexington as I was meeting my buddy, Nancy Sleeth, to walk and have lunch. I toted the two books to show her and find out if she’d read thru’ the Bible before.
She’s done so nearly every year (of course she has), however this year she had not, being busy with editing Matthew’s new book. She quickly offered, “You know, I’ve really missed my daily readings. My One Year Bible is EXACTLY LIKE YOURS!”
Before I could comment, she said, “Let’s do this together! I’m ready to jump back in!”
Now what do you say to that? I stammered, “Uh, well, ok…when do you want to start? July 1st?” (We were at the end of May by this time.)
“Nope,” Nancy said quite matter of factly, followed by a declaration: “Let’s start June 1st!” I had no argument left in me…
Matthew prayed a commissioning prayer over both of us, reminding us God’s grace will cover us when we miss a day here and there. Is God in the details or what?
Not wanting Liz to feel left out (!!!), I decided she needed a Bible just like Nancy’s and mine. Dubbing it an “early birthday gift”, I told her the story and invited her to join Nancy and me.
God bless her, Liz jumped in head first, joining us on the Summer Solstice, and so, now we are three. (Fun sidebar: The day we celebrated her bday early, Liz and I went and had our nails done. Don’t hers look beautiful in the below pic? And an even better sidebar: CND Nails gives the best pedicures EVER in their 26 new chairs. Call (502)894-4445 if you live in or near Louisville. You’ll never leave the chair!) Back to our new mission…
Friends, there’s NOTHING like accountability. I’d LOVE for you to jump in with us, with whatever version you prefer.
Comment “Count me in!” if you’d like to join Liz, Nancy and me. Your name will go into a drawing over the next two weeks (more to this story next week). One lucky person will win a copy of the same One Year Bible we’re reading.
Pray about it. I’ll give you more reasons for jumping in with us next week.
’Til next time!