Saturday, January 28, 2012

Daily Journey

At the beginning of the year, I joined a group of people on a journey.  

The journey involves reading the Standard Works in a year.  For those who are members of the LDS church, the Standard Works include; The Bible, (New and Old Testament), the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and Pearl of Great Price.  There are 2468 pages in all, which averages to about 7 pages of scripture reading a day.  Easy, peasy, right?

  I must admit, I have NEVER read the Old Testament word for word.  I've read some scriptures here and there but have never delved in to it as I am now.  It's refreshing and an eye opener!

Emily Freeman, an author and frequent speaker at Time Out for Women, has made this journey her brain child.  
She has a "Journal/blog" "Daily Closer to Christ" where she writes her insights of the passages of scripture that we read that day. 
 Her thoughts are poignant.  Her pictures are beautiful.   
She likens the scriptures to us; you and me. 
 She helps shed light on those things that may be confusing. (Let's face it, much of the Old Testament can be confusing)

I would like to share part of her first journal entry that she wrote to invite us to join her.

She tells of seeing a hopscotch, drawn with chalk, on a street by her home.  Usually a hopscotch has 10 spaces. This one had 110!  The words, written in chalk, at the beginning of the "course" reads, "For those 10 and under. Enter If You Dare!" 

These are Emily's words:

"As the enthusiasm of the designer captured my imagination I couldn’t hold back the happy giggle.  She had spent the good part of an afternoon setting up a challenging course.  I wondered how many of her friends dared join her adventure…and how many finished?

In the spirit of this enthusiastic hopscotch designer I am about to invite you on a journey.  I have spent the good part of a month exploring this idea, and I should probably warn you ––this isn’t your average journey.
The masthead for this adventure reads:
Enter if you are weary and in need of a rest
   Enter if you are looking for hope, or peace  
       Enter if you seek answers to questions of the heart  
           Enter if you shoulder a burden heavier than you can bear on your own
                  Enter if you long for the companionship of the Lord

"Maybe sometime during the next few weeks you might decide that this adventure is for you.  If so, perhaps you could spend some time thinking about just what your heart needs from this journey.  What would you like to gain from this experience?  You might consider reading Elder Bednar’s talk, A Reservoir of Living Water, as you prepare.  As always, this is an open ended invitation, which means you can invite anyone you want to join us on this journey.
Already I feel my heart preparing for the New Year.  I feel the reaching, the yearning for growth, the desire for 2012 to be a different year than 2011 was.  I ponder opening my heart wider to allow Him more room for molding me, shaping me, leading me.  What better way to be led than through His word daily?  What better way to be molded and shaped than by learning from those He has molded and shaped before.  Holy words on gilded pages.  This year my soul longs to know more of those words.
Will you join us?"

It's not too late to join.  You can jump right in with both feet.  After all, we've been reading for only 28 days!  You haven't missed much, only the creation of the world, Adam and Eve, Joseph being sold into Egypt, the plagues, the Israelites leaving Egypt, the parting of the Red Sea, and the building of the tabernacle.  But you already know those stories,  You can go on Emily's blog and read her insight and then continue on the journey with us.  Click here for a reading schedule.
It's a good way to start a new year. 


Cherie said...

Connie this is absolutely what I needed today!!
I am having such a hard time getting on a regular reading program.
This is super neat and I am going to check out her site!!

Hope you have a Super Day!!!

Cherie said...

Ha Ha I guess Super is my word for the day!!!! Ha Ha

Cherie said...

BTW.... FIrST!!!!!!

Cherie said...

That felt SUPER :-D

Kristina P. said...

I suck at reading regularly. I really need to get back into the habit.

Grandma Honey said...

This is not what I expected to wake up to this morning. So I went over to Emily's blog and I admit, I was captured by it. What a sensitive deep soul she is. I'm wondering if this is what I need to do. It looks very inviting....

The Jones Fam said...

Loved getting a little escape and reading some of your updates! This sounds like a great idea. Also, I had been wondering how Andy's foot was doing. I hope it's getting smaller! (the hole... not his foot)

Susan R said...

Well done, I wish you well on your journey.
I'll give it a shot, but make no guarantees.

Garden of Egan said...

OK! You are totally inspiring me! It might cut into my blogging or Pinteresting time, but I think it would be better to do that instead.

I might even try to catch up.
Off to check out Emily's blog.

Uh, by the way both you and Camille inspire me! Love that girl.

gigi said...

What a wonderful way to start the new year!! Good luck to all that join!

Barbaloot said...

Oh my gosh!! That sounds intense. And rewarding. Can't wait to hear more about how you feel about it. I've never read the whole OT...and sometimes just reading parts gets a little intense to me.

Yvonne said...

I read Emily's blog, and was so tempted. But teaching Gospel Doctrine has caused me to spend a lot of time reading and studying the Book of Mormon--which I love.

When I taught Seminary and taught the Old Testament, I read the entire Old Testament--word for word. I loved reading it all.

I do think I will read Emily's blog every day--I know not the same, but better than nothing ; )

karen said...

This is such a good idea. I've been doing it for awhile now via It lets you read whatever book you want, at whatever pace you want (I do a chapter a day - sometimes more if I want to) and (best of all) it emails it to you so you can do it at work or anywhere! I just finished the New Testament, so maybe I will join you all and read the Old Testament again. Good idea for the new year.

wendy said...

Holy cow...ALL of the standard works in only ONE YEAR.
Isn't that like going to school and taking "accelorated classes" (tee,hee)....
I know I'd never be able to read them all in just one year.
BUT...I am reading The Promised Messiah, by Bruce R. McConkie. I made that my goal for this year. I am going to read all 4 of the books he 2 books on Jesus the Christ, then The Millenial (sp) Messiah.
For ME...I feel pretty good about that.

I'll go over and see her blog and see what inspirations lie there. Maybe as you go on this journey, you can share some of your Own inspirations.
Hey...I saw the Musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat..does that count. (tee,hee)

love and admire you

Garden of Egan said...

Just so ya've inspired me once again. I'm gonna try this!
Nothing hard like Wendy....reading Jesus the, I did that once....THAT was hard!
I hope to be able to get through Isaiah when the time comes.....

mCat said...

What a great goal! When I was Gospel Doctrine teacher, the very first year was the Old Testament. I was sure I wouldn't understand a word of it, but it turned out to be one of my most favorites

Doran & Jody said...

Just this past week I was determined to catch up in RS reading and maaayybe Gospel Doctrine. I am already trying to read the BOM and catch up with a schedule I made years ago that I was asked again to make copies for the ward.

I think I will add this to my reading also. I don't know whether to start at the first or read where you are and try to catch up later.

I teach Primary so I haven't been as good to keep up with the "adult" reading.

Heffalump said...

I haven't read straight through the Old Testament since Seminary, and I have to admit we cheated a bit by reading aloud to each other back then.
Sounds like a great challenge!

Joanie said...

Enjoy the journey!

Mikki said...

oh my goodness. Do you know that I'm stranded in 2nd Nephi right now? Can't get past/through those Isaiah chapters. Maybe this is what I need. Like you, I've never read all of Genesis. I usually get stuck about where you're at right now. Those forty years in the wilderness are hard to wade through.
This sounds wonderful though, maybe it's exactly what I need. I'll be checking out that link! Thanks Connie!

Ginger said...

What a great goal! I will cheer you on! I honestly can't say which book of scripture I love the most... I guess the one I am studying at the time is my favorite! I just love them. You are going to love it. If you don't have the Institute Student manuals, I would HIGHLY recommend you get them to go along with your study... especially for the Old Testament. I almost need a new set because mine is getting worn out! They are awesome materials to use alongside your scriptures! Good luck!

Gerb said...

I'm not sure why, maybe to break away from the typical study of the Book of Mormon, but we've been reading Genesis and now Exodus with our family. Next time you're reading some of this stuff, imagine reading it with a bunch of little ones and all of the questions they would ask! We never realized how totally wicked some of these people were until we read the stories out loud to the kids and had to explain them. I think we're starting back on the Book of Mormon after Exodus. :)

JennyLynn said...

Sounds like something I would enjoy. Skipping over to join in.

Handsfullmom said...

What an ambitious project. I'm sure you'd learn a lot from it, though. Good luck!