Some men from our church recently committed to read Do More Better: A Practical Guide to Productivity by Tim Challies as a supplement to our ongoing discipleship group curriculum. We studied this book in order to identify the areas of our lives where we were prone to waste time or procrastinate in our duties or simply not get our life tasks done effectively or consistently. It was an enlightening and convicting experience. Though brief, Challies’ book is packed with good material and serves as a solid “theology of productivity” that is ideal for personal edification and group study. After reading it, it became clear that we all needed to improve our productivity for the glory of God. I recommend it for anyone wishing to honor God in their lives through more intentional and disciplined stewardship of the time they have been given. At some point I may write a full review of the book, but that is not the point of this post.
“Productivity is effectively stewarding your gifts, talents, time, energy, and enthusiasm for the good of others and the glory of God.” – Tim Challies
One of the tools that Mr. Challies recommends in his book is Todoist, a powerful online tool that is used to create projects (a group of tasks) and manage the tasks and sub-tasks within those projects. Todoist features a very clean & intuitive “check box” (actually check circle) interface that also features meta tagging, fast search and customizable view filters that makes finding and organizing your numerous tasks a breeze. Todist stores all your projects and task data “in the cloud” and syncs this data in real-time across your desktop or mobile devices. I could go and on about the great feature and benefits of this tool, but I’ll refrain for now.
I was initially skeptical of my need for a tool like Todoist. However, after further reflection and discussion with my peers, I decided to give it a try. I started with the free version and I was hooked after only a few days. I found that I was becoming noticably more productive! I quickly signed up for the inexpensive premium edition ($29 per year). With Todoist Premium, I now track and manage my tasks for work & home projects, various shopping errands, bill paying, personal fitness and even spiritual disciplines. Our family even started using it with our kids to monitor their daily chores! It is a really great tool. Another blogger using Todoist stated that Todoist was completely life changing for him. I’m inclined to agree with this assessment.
I mentioned that I had been using Todoist to track and monitor some of the spirtual aspects of my life. Even so, I realized that I needed a better way to hold myself accountable for engaging in regular prayer and structured Bible reading. Adding a simple daily “Pray & Read” task to my “Personal” project in Todoist helped me since I was now being reminded of it as I went about my day. Prior to using Todoist, I had been working through the reading of the entire Bible with the M’Cheyne One Year Bible Reading Plan using the YouVersion Bible app. While that mobile app was somewhat helpful to keep me on track with it’s daily reminder notification option, I found that I would miss days if I was busy at the time of the reminder or I wasn’t reminded throughout the day. I am about 50 days away from completing that reading plan (it took me much longer than a year) and I hope to start it again as soon as I’m finished. This time, however, I plan to use Todoist to keep me on track.
Todoist has a cool option to export and import frequently used project templates. When I learned of this feature, I soon realized that with a extra little work, I could create an daily Bible reading Todoist project based upon the M’Cheyne Plan. Now that I’ve created it, I want to share it with anyone who desires to use it. (My thanks goes out to the folks at Planet of the Penguins for making their Todoist import creation tool publicly available.)
NOTE: In order to work around a limitation within Todoist (you cannot create a project with more than 200 tasks and you cannot import a project containing more than 300 tasks), I have split the M’Cheyne Bible Reading Plan into 2 parts. (My apologies to anyone who unsuccessfully imported my original version of the project with all 365 days in it.)
Here is part 1 (consisting of the 1st 185 days) and here is part 2 (remaining 180 days). I recommend that you import both parts into your Todoist account on the same day in order to avoid a future gap in the plan. Once you have imported both, you should have two new project in your project list: “M’Cheyne One Year Bible Reading Plan Part One” and “M’Cheyne One Year Bible Reading Plan Part Two”. The first day of the plan will start the day after you import it and will contain a set of chapters to read each day for 365 days.
If you would prefer to download the project data source (csv) files to your local computer and manipulate them before importing them into your Todoist account, click here for a compressed (.zip) set of those 2 files.
I hope that you find this article and Bible reading plan to be useful. Please leave a comment below if you have questions or concerns. We’d also love to hear if this Todoist project template helped you to read the Scriptures daily.
If you know others who might find this article helpful, please like and share on your favorite social network.
“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” – Psalm 119:105 ESV
Did You Know?
- The M’Cheyne Bible Reading Plan is named after Robert Murray M’Cheyne, missionary and Presbyterian minister in the church of Scotland. He died at the age of 29.
- If you follow the reading schedule that bears his name, this plan will have you reading the New Testament and the Psalms through twice a year, and the Old Testament through once.