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For those that have just completed the 2016 Bible Reading Challenge, congratulations! You have completed a significant accomplishment. I hope that along the way, regardless of the reading plan you selected, you have found the readings interesting and have grown significantly in your spiritual journey.

We started the year with 52 individuals emailing me answers. There were also an additional 15–20 reading and not turning in any answers. As the year comes to a close, we have 23 people who should finish reading this week — including participants in the elementary and youth categories — and are eligible to win the contest. The three winners will be announced on Sunday, January 8, at our 11:00 am service.

I want to encourage everyone who has started but slowed down or stopped reading. Please keep reading and finish at your own pace. I know several clergy who say it takes them more than a year to read through the Bible. If it takes them longer, you should give yourself permission to take longer.

While the contest has ended, I would be happy to continue receiving your answers as you “catch up” and will continue to encourage you in your journey. Several of our members use the free Olive Tree Bible app for iOS or Android. This app is a great way to take the Bible with you and comes with free NIV and ESV translations. But it also includes a number of free reading plans for going through all of the Bible or shorter segments like the New Testament. It will track your progress without the stress of a defined end date.

Whether you have completed or are still working on reading the Bible, I want you to know that you have been a great encouragement to me. Thank you for your participation and for your desire to grow in the Spirit.

I also hope you will join us in our reading plan for 2017. All the details are available on Kingswood’s web site.

In His grace and peace,

Charles

Author: Rev. Charles Broome

Rev. Broome is Senior Pastor of Kingswood United Methodist Church.