It’s been 28 days since I started reading Paul’s letter to the Philippians aloud every day. Most days I read it twice – once in the morning and once in the evening. I didn’t blog about the experience as much as I would have liked so I’m going to try to summarize the various thoughts I have about this experiment.
Reading the same passage over and over again aloud led to a level of familiarity with the text that I haven’t experienced before. I don’t think I will easily forget the content of Paul’s letter or the many expressions of his love for the Philippians. And I did find that I memorized some sections without effort.
In addition to familiarity I found myself going deeper into the text than I have before. Reading something aloud forces you to pay attention to every word and not skip over words or phrases that are unclear. I found myself searching for answers to questions that came up for me.
For example, a few times Paul would use Jesus Christ but much more frequently Christ Jesus. I wondered what significance the order might have.
I wondered what Paul meant when he wrote, “But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith” in Philippians 2:17.
Finally, there were a few times where a specific phrase would stand out to me during a particular reading that either comforted me or convicted me. I believe the Holy Spirit was at work. To recognize God’s presence in my life is an amazing gift.
For all these reasons my primary reaction is a strong desire to read more of the Bible this way. In particular, a desire to read aloud words from Jesus. I’m going to start next month by reading aloud the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew every day.