A few years ago, I started loading the Bible into my note-taking system. I did it a little bit at a time, adding chapters as needed along the way. Here is a video I created a couple of years ago to show how I was approaching it:
I may have eventually built it all out by doing it that way, but I spent this year focusing on really building it and just finished this morning. Big thanks to my friend Tim for inviting me to the “49-Week Challenge” this year, which walked through the entire Bible in a year.
Each morning when I’d read the 4-6 chapters for the day, I’d manually paste and format them in my system (currently Tana) as well. It added more work each day, but breaking it into just an extra 5-10 minutes each day was manageable and let to great results.
The 49-Week Challenge was excellent, but didn’t really add much context to the reading for each day. I’m looking forward to getting back into a more traditional daily devotional that focuses on less scripture but goes a bit deeper. I’ll likely dig back into Tony Dungy’s daily devotional, which I had started briefly but set aside for the year-long challenge.
This is where the payoff will come in. As I’m working through Dungy’s devotional, I’ll already have the entire Bible in Tana. It’ll be quite easy to reference scripture and slowly build up a network of linked thoughts, ideas, and scripture over time.
There’s also the consideration of putting everything in one place: work stuff, books I’m reading, Bible references, blog posts, etc. Some people split those into separate systems, but I love keeping them in one place because I tend to find a lot of overlap between them.
A good example of this is from a few years ago. I was at a business luncheon where Kevin Paul Scott was speaking. In the course of his talk, he referenced some books, some quotes, and some scripture. Here’s a peek at my notes from it:
In this one talk we had:
- Business (the purpose of the luncheon)
- Books (him mentioning the quote from Essentialism)
- Quotes (like John Maxwell and Zig Ziglar)
- Scripture (from Proverbs 14:4)
I could certainly tuck those into separate systems, but the magic comes from having them together. Because the note system references links in both directions, when I view any of those items in the future (the book, the scripture, the quotes, etc), I’ll see the reference back to this talk to help give additional framing around that text.
It’s been a long 49 weeks getting things built out, but I think the benefits will be fantastic over the coming years.