I ran across a great story today in the Huffington Post. As some of you may know, the Huffington Post is not a place where there is much written that is pro-Christian or pro-Bible. Usually the articles range from criticizing Christianity and questioning the Bible. However this story just shows you how the Bible can actually change your life if you will just allow it to. Craig Kanalley went on a spiritual quest. He decided that he was going to read the Bible in 100 days. He took his Ipad and downloaded the Bible from Ibooks and decided he would read 1% of the Bible every day for 100 days. His telling of the journey is worth repeating here. So I will share just a few excerpts from his story but I seriously recommend that you read the entire story for yourself.
Reading the Bible in 100 days changed Craig Kanalley’s life
Craig Kanalley Senior Editor, Big News & Live Events, The Huffington Post
I felt I needed a shake-up in my life. And that’s what happened. I decided to make a career change, abruptly leaving my job at NBC News, and coming back to where I was happy in a prior phase of my life, The Huffington Post (thanks for allowing me back!). It was risky. For one thing, you’re not supposed to leave a job after just three months. It was a period of transition. And with that transition, I wanted God to be with me.
So, I started reading the Bible. This is something I had tried to do many times before. I was raised Catholic, but I could never find myself to read the whole thing; it’s just so long, and I’m a slow reader.But I felt my life was in a potentially perilous situation. What if going back to HuffPost didn’t work out like I hoped it would? I turned to prayer. And I told myself I’d read the whole Bible for 100 days. Easy enough with technology — I could track 1 percent of the Bible read per day through iBooks on my iPad. I decided to tell the world and update my progress each day with a Tumblr, so others could hold me accountable if they saw I stopped posting (I never did stop).
Now, say what you will, whether you’re religious or not, but I’m happy to report that those trying times, and stormy clouds, quickly evaporated as I started reading the Bible. I began reading Genesis during my last week at NBC News. My first day back at HuffPost shortly thereafter was amazing. I felt so welcome and truly at home again.
Craig goes on to tell of some events that happened in his life that were out of the ordinary for him. I won’t post all the details but suffice it to say that reading the Bible was quickly having an effect on him.
Reading the Bible daily on my iPad was becoming so immersed in my mind, body, spirit and part of my routine that at times, I physically wanted to kneel on the subway in prayer as I read on the commute to and from work. I never did that, but I did find a routine of standing all the time as I read, and balancing myself without holding onto anything. I’m not sure why, it just became a thing. Perhaps it wasn’t just physically balancing myself but a sense of being spiritually and mentally balanced as I read too; it was refreshing.
Nearly everything around me seemed to take on great meaning, spiritual meaning. I’m not sure if I was overthinking things, going crazy, or something was really happening. For example, this random chair showed up one evening on the subway as I was reading the Bible. I had never seen that before! Was it a spirit of some kind? My deceased grandfather? God? I thought a lot about things like that.
Another subway encounter: A woman gave me a ping pong ball eye ball. An image and story you need to see to believe, documented here. It had “Always believe in angels” written on it. Needless to say, that one got me thinking.
Craig goes on to tell of many other instances where things just started to happen in his life and how his whole perspective was changing. Reading the Bible was starting to change him from the inside out. His perspective and awareness of spiritual things became much more acute and in tune. Not only that but it started to make him re-evaluate his morals as you will see with this next excerpt.
I started realizing my view on life was changing, ever so slightly, and as all these good things happened, I was thinking, wait, really? Why? And what do I have to do in return? I was becoming more spiritual, more reflective. I pondered the meaning of life more. I wrote a post on the importance of being humble and humility and constantly asked myself during these past 100 days how can I help others more, do more for others? I made sure to block out more of my time that was usually for myself for others. I spoke with countless students and young professionals these last few months, including a few journalism classes, heard their stories and shared advice. I’ve talked with folks on the phone, helped strangers around the city (specifically looking for those who seemed in need, confused or just looking to chat) and helped strangers online too. I surprised my family last-minute by coming home for Memorial Day Weekend. We went to an amusement park like old times.
As Craig wraps up his report on how reading the Bible changed his life, he says some things that we as believers can all relate to.
And the words I read in the Bible were so strong, so meaningful, and they spoke so loudly to me that they seemed to jump off the page. There were many “aha” moments, epiphanies of sorts. Feelings of, YES, I’ve felt this way before, or YES, I can relate with my own life. The fact that a book so many hundreds of years old can speak to someone like that in this modern world is really amazing, in my opinion.
I just want to thank God for somehow giving me this idea to read the Bible, cover to cover. I’m on a mission now. Because even though these 100 days are now in the past, I can still carry out all that I’ve read. I’m feeling so much better and I now have meaning in my life, a clear mission as I said. This is what I sought out for when I started this project. I couldn’t ask for anything more.
How many of you are up to reading the Bible in 100 days?
I think I am going to encourage all of you to take the same challenge that Craig did. How many of you are up to reading the Bible in 100 days? If you are willing, then leave a comment below. Come back daily or weekly or whatever and give us an update on how you are doing. Let us know what you discover on your journey. Let us know how or if it is changing your life. This will be something that is encouraging to many other people. Who knows, maybe God will use Craig’s journey to encourage thousands of other people to read the Bible and if so, maybe, just maybe the heart of our nation will be changed. Are you up for the challenge? Spread the word. Get people involved!