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  • Writer's pictureBy Pastor Andy Plank

Trip-taking and Bible-reading?

Updated: Jun 6, 2021

May 30, 2021

As we were traveling to and from the Smokies this past weekend, I started doing some pondering about traveling. The gist of my pondering is this: There are two different ways to take a trip. The first way is to just get there. Go straight to your destination, do not pass go, and whatever you do, don’t take any side trips, just get to where you are going. When I was in college, several of us were from the Middle Tennessee area, so we would carpool and split the cost of gas. It’s a long way from Temple Terrace, Florida to Nashville Tennessee. In fact, during the 55 MPH speed limit days of the mid 1980’s, it took about twelve hours to make the trip. We had a buddy who had a car that got good gas mileage, so quite often, he drove. The problem was, he was the perfect personification of the trip taker I just described. For the duration of this entire trip, he stopped two times for gas. If we were fortunate, the gas station would be close to a restaurant and restroom because he wasn’t stopping again. My buddy turned a twelve-hour trip into ten and a half hours. We would arrive with our eyeballs floating and our stomachs growling, but we would be there early! The second trip taker likes to take the scenic route. He is no hurry. He enjoys cruising down the highway, curious about what lies just over the next hill. He may never reach his destination, but when the trip is over, he has some terrific pictures and memories to accompany those pictures. Now, there is nothing wrong with the way either trip-taker travels. In fact, depending on the purpose of the trip, I have found myself traveling both paths. Just like there are two types of trip-takers, there are two types of Bible readers as well. The first type reads her Bible faithfully every day. In fact, she participates in a daily Bible reading program and she has the checkmarks to prove it. The goal for her is to get finished. The second type of Bible reader takes his time. He is more interested in the context, history, and side story than he is about getting finished. In fact, he might not make it through the Bible in a year but when his year is over, he finds that he has learned more in the past year than ever before. Just as there is no wrong way to take a trip, there is also no wrong way to read God’s word. In fact, I find myself reading the Bible both ways. I am participating in a daily Bible reading program. I really enjoy it. The discipline of daily reading with a destination in mind is good for me both physically and spiritually. On the other hand, I also enjoy Bible reading with no real end in mind. I might only read a verse or two, but I find myself dissecting and meditating on those verses for days and sometimes weeks at a time. I encourage you to take trips. Trip-taking is fun. Whether it’s reaching your destination or just enjoying the journey on the way to your destination. When you take a trip, you will be enriched. Just like trip-taking, Bible reading can be life changing. Whether building the discipline of daily Bible reading or doing a deep dive into Scripture meditation, your life and your walk with Jesus will grow stronger.

Be blessed and go be a blessing . . . Andy

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