Last year I came across a bible reading plan that took you from Genesis to Revelation in 30 days (30 Day Reading Plan – Genesis to Revelation).  While some may argue that reading at that rate won’t allow for any deep study/reflection, I found it to be intense and worthwhile.  (However, scripture memorization may be the best possible means of studying the bible as it forces you to consider every word and its order.)

That 30 Day reading plan inspired me to take the year long ESV chronological reading plan and condense it into 30 days (30 Day Reading Plan Chronological).  I did not alter the order of the readings (chapters and verses), I merely condensed about 12 days of the assigned readings from the ESV plan into one day’s worth of assigned reading.

I just came across this reading plan from Professor Horner (Master’s Seminary) this morning.  I am starting this plan today: Professor Horner’s Reading Plan

If any of you work through any of the plans, please post a comment below as to which plan you have selected and how it’s challenging and growing you.

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This is a beautiful devotion taken out of Sprugeon’s Morning & Evening.

“Thou that dwellest in the gardens, the companions hearken to Thy voice: cause me to hear it.” – Song of Solomon 8:13

My sweet Lord Jesus remembers well the garden of Gethsemane, and although He has left that garden, He now dwells in the garden of His church: there He unbosoms Himself to those who keep His blessed company. That voice of love with which He speaks to His beloved is more musical than the harps of heaven. There is a depth of melodious love within it which leaves all human music far behind. Ten of thousands on earth, and millions above, are indulged with its harmonious accents. Some whom I well know, and whom I greatly envy, are at this moment hearkening to the beloved voice. O that I were a partaker of their joys! It is true some of these are poor, others bedridden, and some near the gates of death, but O my Lord, I would cheerfully starve with them, pine with them, or die with them, if I might but hear Thy voice. Once I did hear it often, but I have grieved Thy Spirit. Return unto me in compassion, and once again say unto me, “I am thy salvation.” No other voice can content me; I know Thy voice, and cannot be deceived by another, let me hear it, I pray thee. I know not what Thou wilt say, neither do I make any condition, O my Beloved, do but let me hear Thee speak, and if it be a rebuke I will bless Thee for it. Perhaps to cleanse my dull ear may need an operation very grievous to the flesh, but let it cost what it may I turn not from the one consuming desire, cause me to hear Thy voice. Bore my ear afresh;  pierce my ear with Thy harshest notes, only do not permit me to continue deaf to Thy calls. To-night, Lord, grant Thine unworthy one his desire, for I am Thine, and Thou hast bought me with Thy blood. Thou hast opened mine eye to see Thee, and the sight has saved me. Lord, open Thou mine ear. I have read Thy heart, now let me hear Thy lips.

“The sovereign choice of the Father, by which he elected us unto eternal life, or ever the earth was, is a matter of vast antiquity, since no date can be conceived for it by the mind of man. We were chosen from before the foundations of the world. Everlasting love went with the choice, for it was not a bare act of divine will by which we were set apart, but the divine affections were concerned. The Father loved us in and from the beginning. Here is a theme for daily contemplation. The eternal purpose to redeem us from our foreseen ruin, to cleanse and sanctify us, and at last to glorify us, was of infinite antiquity, and runs side by side with immutable love and absolute sovereignty.” – C.H. Spurgeon

“Stars may be seen from the bottom of a deep well when they cannot be discerned from the top of a mountain: so are many things learned in adversity which the prosperous man dreams not of. We need affliction as the tress need winter, that we may collect sap and nourishment for future blossoms and fruit. Sorrow is as necessary for the soul as medicine is to the body: ‘The path of sorrow, and the path alone, Leads to the land where sorris is unknown.’ The adversities of today are a preparatory school for the higher learning.” – Charles Haddon Spurgeon

Whether it be physical pain, emotional distress, feelings of rejection and loneliness, or whatever, it is often through adversity that I am able to see just how desperate for Christ I truly am. I am thankful for these seasons because I am restored with a deeper faith and a richer joy in Christ than I previously had. I may come out of these storms weathered but I am somehow stronger. This is one of the great paradoxes of our faith! For when I am weak, then I am strong (2 Corinthians 12:10).

I thank God for breaking me down and rooting out my sin in the various ways He has. I pray that He would continue to do so out of His love for me.

“My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” (Ps 73:26)

“Oh! There is nothing that can so advantage you, nothing can so prosper you, so assist you, so make you walk towards heaven rapidly, so keep your head upwards towards the sky, and your eyes radiant with glory, like the imitation of Jesus Christ. It is when, by the power of the Holy Spirit, you are enabled to walk with Jesus in his very footsteps, and tread in his ways, you are most happy and you are most known to be the sons of God. For your sake, my brethren, I say, be like Christ. To draw him nearer to me, and myself nearer to him, is the innermost longing of my soul.” – Charles Spurgeon

There are times when we fall into sin: lust, pride, anger, gluttony, greed, and so on.  When that happens we often feel dirty and rejected.  There are other times when tragedy strikes and we feel as though we’ve been abandoned.  It’s during these times that we must remember the Gospel.  We have a Savior who can sympathize with us when we are tempted, when we feel rejected, when we are faced with tragedy, and when we feel completely alone.  Here’s what’s even better — We have a Savior who goes beyond mere sympathy! Because of the work Jesus did on the cross we who are in Christ will never be abandoned by the Father!  Christ became our sin and for that He was abandoned and crushed by the Father so that we may never know what it’s like to be truly alone.  What an amazing King we have; and what an amazing, beautiful, holy, and romantic story we have in the Gospel!

“And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20b)