Chris Juby

Every chapter of the Bible in 140 characters or less.

I summarised the Bible on Twitter between Aug 2010 and Nov 2013 - one tweet per chapter, one chapter per day.

The @biblesummary account peaked at over 30,000 followers, and was featured in the news all over the world.

Find out about the project here, or feel free to get in contact.

Life as a non-summariser

The project is over. The media attention has pretty much faded. So how has life changed now that I don't summarise the Bible every day?

For the first few mornings I felt a nagging sense that there was something I ought to be doing that I'd forgotten. It was both disorientating and a huge relief when I realised each day that it was Bible Summary and that it was finished.

Then I began to notice having energy to spare as I started my work. I realise again how much the effect of summarising every day has added up, and I'm thankful again for the support of my family.

Right now I'm mainly feeling surprised at how easily I've adjusted. Ten days after the end and I'm fairly unmindful of the absence of the deepest of habits.

I've been shocked to rediscover how difficult it can be to know what to read in the Bible. I decided to read Romans, which I'm obviously benefiting from. But it's hard to feel the same urgency as when I knew I needed to summarise my reading for tens of thousands of Twitter followers.

I actually went a whole day without reading Scripture a couple of days ago. Lots of things were going on in life, and without the obligation of the project I simply didn't prioritise it. It's strange to think how many consecutive days of reading that brought to an end.

Of course, it's possible to end up going through the motions with any habit. Summarising chapters has greatly helped my focus and understanding, but it has also became a technique that I can perform without my whole heart being in it. It's healthy to ask again why I'm reading the Bible at all. There are profound answers to that question.

Bringing my private reading into the public sphere has been an interesting and helpful experiment. But there's risk in it. Having finished the project I wonder how much it has in common with the Pharisees praying on street corners in Matthew 6. In the end I don't think that's a valid criticism, but it does make me think.

Summarising the Bible on Twitter was exactly the right thing to do when I started. And now it would be exactly the wrong thing to continue. It's time for me to reconnect with devotional reading as a private habit.

Tags: progress


Mark Dobie

Awesome truth there Chris, Shen you have read the bible cover to cover it can be hard to start again, but I believe if you read it cover to cover 50 times you would still find fresh reading.

Post a comment

or use the form below...