Taylor Swift wrote a song that contemplates beginning again on a Wednesday in a cafe.
That’s how beginning again often starts. In a booth, on an ordinary day, when everyone else is busy with the ordinary. But for some reason, an epiphany strikes and we know things are about to change.
This happens to me far more often than say, the flipping of the calendar to a new year might dictate.
In August of last year, I was sitting in a booth across from a friend, when he asked me how many times I’d read through the entire Bible.
“Six, I think. The last few years I’ve been focusing on certain books.”
He nodded and told me how many times he’d read through it. “And Gene (a man who had been there before I arrived) has read through it more than twenty times.”
I had stopped reading the Bible all the way through a few years ago because it often felt like I was skimming the surface of the truth contained in its pages. I felt like I needed to go deeper.
For example, I journaled through the Psalms over the last half of 2021. Before that, I outlined the book of Leviticus. And before that, I camped out in the Pauline letters for an extended period.
On that August day, I felt like I should return to reading the Bible all the way through for my next season of devotions, so I jumped in the next day. My solution for avoiding the feeling like I’m skimming the top of the water, so to speak, was to read slower, more intentionally.
Some days I read two chapters. Other days I read one. I found that I retained the truth of the Scriptures better. Later in the day, I’m often reminded of something I read that morning. Or during a conversation, a certain truth I read seems to apply and I can easily share it with someone.
None of this is one-size-fits-all. After I’m done reading the Bible for the seventh time, I don’t know if I’ll start over again right away. I’m not wired to think in such structured ways. But I have a feeling that I’ll be sitting in a coffee shop or diner when inspiration will strike at the perfect time.