Reading a book may not seem like such a big challenge, compared to some of the projects I've taken on in the past, but this one will be.
No it's not Tolstoy's "War and Peace" (actually, I've read that already) or "The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire" (I own it, but it's still sitting in its beautiful box on my night table), but the Old Testament.
I have read many parts of it, studied its stories and lessons, participated in Sunday School classes with this as the text, and generally delved into pieces of it. But I have never gotten right down into it, reading from Genesis 1 t0 Malachi 4.
I have no illusions that this will be easy or fast. There are 929 chapters in the Old Testament. My goal is to read 5 chapters a week. do the math and that means it will take me three and a half years! Slow and steady wins the race, right? I figure anything faster will make me feel like I'm just trying to get through it, rather than learn from it.
I've never been a fan of reading the bible chronologically. I've always been a subject studier - choose a topic and read different chapters and books that cover it. But I think there is something to be said from reading chapter to chapter. Hopefully it will provide me with a much better understanding of what led up to the chapter or event which I read.
What I'm really hoping to discover is deeper insight into the history of God's people. What was their life like? What were their thoughts and feelings about his commandments? How did God ask them to live? I'm very familiar with the New Testament and its tenets, but wonder if I have a gap in my understanding because of the lack of knowledge from the Old Testament?
So I will embark on this challenge. I feel a little daunted, but also excited.
I was also thinking it might be fun to have a little reading group, if there was anyone interested in it. I find as a new mom with a fussy baby I only get to hear snatches of Sunday School lessons. So if anyone is interested in joining my challenge, reading the Old Testament, and meeting once a week, or every two weeks, or even just once a month, to talk about what we've read, let me know. I'd be more than happy to host! If schedules don't permit, perhaps an online journal would be helpful also. (Although I'm really trying to move out of the online world a little and more into the real one! How I crave human interaction, and conversations with someone other than my children!)