Daily Books

Daily Books

I get asked all the time about what books/Bibles/devotionals I read every day and so I thought, today, I would share.  I know several of you have told me you want to incorporate more of that into your 2017, so I’m hoping this makes it a little bit easier for you.

Every morning, I wake up and have a quiet time.  I did a post about Quiet Times that you can read HERE a few years ago.  For me, there’s no better way to start my day than with a little quiet and a whole lot of Jesus.  Last year, I read through the Bible in one year using the One Year Bible and I loved it so much that I am doing it again this year…

…this is my One Year Bible.  I like the New Living Translation myself, but there are a multitude of other versions if you prefer something else.  Now, this Bible is broken down into 365 daily sections starting with January 1 and going through December 31.  Each daily section has an Old Testament portion, New Testament Portion, part of a Psalm and a Proverb.  No matter what day it is, start with January 1 and go from there.  No worries if you don’t finish in one year.  At the beginning of this Bible, it even shares a two year plan for you.  Instead of focusing on how quickly you can get through it, really focus on the content.  So, whether it takes you one year or five…I think it’s more important to stop and absorb the words rather than quickly rush through it.  Last year and this year, as I read through my One Year Bible, I keep my good old regular Bible nearby…

…this is my normal/regular/not broken down into days Bible :).  I personally love reading the Life Application Study Bible in the New Living Translation because at the bottom of each page, it expands on the scripture and really makes it user-friendly.  My mom gave me this Bible right before I got married and it’s my favorite.  So, often, when I’m reading through the day’s passages in my One Year Bible, I’ll want to expand on something I’m reading, so I’ll flip on over to this Bible and go to that section and read it along with the commentary at the bottom of the page.  This is also the Bible that I take with me to church because as I sit in Sunday school or in the worship center, I can easily find the scripture that is being preached.  Now, in my opinion, there is no better book to read each day than the Bible.  People are often asking me which devotionals and such they should read and I’m a big fan of devotionals after you’ve actually read the Bible.  (Because instead of reading a book about the Bible, why not just read the Bible, right?)  One of my favorite daily devotionals is Sarah Young’s Jesus Calling and recently, she just came out with this one…

Jesus Always.  I’ve been reading this at the end of my quiet time every day this year.  She typically takes three or four verses and puts them together for some really inspiring words.  Like this…

…and as you can see, she lists the scriptures at the bottom, so if you would like to elaborate on that more, you would just flip over to your main Bible (in my case, it’s that Life Application Study Bible) and look it up.

And one more thing you might want to add to your daily routine.  Many, many years ago (can you believe I’ve been blogging for almost 10 years!), I did a post about having a daily gratitude journal.  You can read that post HERE.   Every single day for 13 years, I wrote down five things I was grateful for that day.  Every.  Single.  Day.  for THIRTEEN YEARS.  I’m not sure there is another exercise I’ve ever done besides reading my Bible daily that has affected me more in life.  That daily act of finding five things to be grateful for at the end of each day changed me profoundly.  Those 13 books are filled with mostly mundane and simple things that made me happy that day (a good cup of coffee, fresh sheets on the bed, a client being extra nice to me, finding $5 in my coat pocket, etc).  They’re not filled with grand things, but little things…and because I trained myself over a long period of time to constantly be looking for little things to be grateful for, now, I do it all the time without even having to try.  I’m constantly finding little bits of gratitude every day.  The books also made me face some really horrible days and find gratitude in them too (when loved ones died, when I told a boy I couldn’t marry him, when I lost my first baby and struggled with infertility).  I made myself find gratitude in the awful days too.

 So, I stopped after 13 years (because 13 is my lucky number and I thought that sounded like a good place to stop), but you could add this to your daily book reading too.  I would always write my five things down at the end of the day.

Those my friends, are my daily books :).  Many of you have asked, so now you know.  I wake up, grab my coffee and read my books before tackling my day.  Do you read any books/devotionals daily?  If you do, please share!!

And don’t forget this friends…

…this Wednesday is our first Workin’ Wednesdays link up!  Our topic this month is how we’re keeping those New Year’s goals together.  Make sure you blog and link up on Wednesday!

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  • Erika Slaughter January 9, 2017 at 4:42 am

    Great minds are thinking alike. 😉 I have a post about quiet times coming this week too. I’m so much more intentional when I start my day with Jesus and the quiet mornings make it even better.

  • LC January 9, 2017 at 5:14 am

    I just listened to a sermon yesterday about seeing and acknowledging Jesus as the king of kings. As the Lord of lords on a throne and not a mascot in your pocket. Waking up with Him at the start of my day helps keep this with me all day long! Thank you for sharing!

  • Carly January 9, 2017 at 5:16 am

    Thank you for sharing. You inspired me to make 2017 the year to do the Bible. Thank you for saying that it is more important to take in the words than the volume. Sometimes I find myself having the attention span to read less and hen sometimes more to catch up! Feeling less guilty now!

  • Megan January 9, 2017 at 5:17 am

    The one year bible is on my to-do list. Jesus Calling is a great one. I didn’t know she had a new book out. Thanks for sharing!


  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog January 9, 2017 at 5:18 am

    I journal daily. I haven’t missed a day since 2012! I love writing and I can write up to a page, so I have to stop myself often haha. It helps me relax at the end of the day. 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

  • Deanna January 9, 2017 at 5:54 am

    I just got my copy of Jesus Always and also read The One Year Bible. Such great books to start each day!

  • Sheaffer Sims January 9, 2017 at 5:56 am

    I know this post will give many ladies a solid plan!

  • Narci January 9, 2017 at 6:16 am

    Great recommendations! Quiet time in the morning is the perfect start to my day, too. Love this post!! Xo

  • Kristen January 9, 2017 at 6:32 am

    I’ve been reading through the One Year Chronological Bible which is also a great format. It’s helping me to have a greater understanding of the Old Testament for sure! 🙂 And I knew I’d never keep up with completing it in one year so I don’t worry about the date, I just open it up to where I last left off

  • Kelly January 9, 2017 at 6:50 am

    Th ask you for the inspiration. A quick question for you… do you ever find it a struggle to do your Bible reading (quiet time)? Are you ever distracted with wanting to do/read something else ? Or is it just such an ingrained habit that you automatically do it without the temptation to do something else?

    • Mix and Match Mama January 9, 2017 at 6:52 am

      If I’m at home, it’s such an ingrained habit (I’ve been doing it for 20 years now), that I don’t even think about doing something else. That being said, if I’m away on vacation, it’s harder to find the time. Also, I allow for off days. If I have to leave the house at 5:00 to drive Ashby to the hospital for a procedure, I’ll try and do it there at the hospital, but if I don’t, I don’t beat myself up about it…God knows my heart.

  • Jenny January 9, 2017 at 6:59 am

    I just ordered a new devotional by Beth Moore called, Looking Up, after another blogger posted about it. I’m hoping it shows up today! And hoping even more, that it’s as good as it looked online.

  • Becky January 9, 2017 at 7:05 am

    New Morning Mercies by Paul David Tripp is phenomenal!

    • Tina January 9, 2017 at 7:21 am

      I second and triple this recommendation!!!!!!

    • Lindy January 9, 2017 at 7:23 am


  • Beth Miller January 9, 2017 at 7:08 am

    We have very similar morning quiet times! I use She Reads Truth for my Bible study. We are currently studying John. It’s in the Word which is so important! I started Jesus Always this year too and read it after my Bible study. I also write who and what I’m praying for in my planner so they are right in front of me and I can look back and see how God is working. I hope many others are inspired to read and study their Bible after this post!

  • Laci January 9, 2017 at 7:24 am

    Great post! Thank you for all the good ways to start a really good habit.

  • Jessie January 9, 2017 at 7:34 am

    I’ve been following IF:Equip for a couple of years now and love their morning devotionals. You can find them at http://www.ifequip.com. Right now they’re doing a 20 days of prayer challenge leading up to their annual conference, IF: Gathering. You can see past studies online though. They email around 5am Monday – Friday with the day’s devotion or you can pull it up online or on their app. There’s Scripture, commentary, and a short video of some Godly ladies discussing. And it’s free!

  • Rebecca January 9, 2017 at 7:50 am

    I have been reading the One Year Bible and read a devotional every morning. I also pray after the readings. This quiet time helps me start the day. I would like to ask you all for prayers. My daughter had a miscarriage with her first baby after several years of infertility. She is heartbroken. Please pray for peace in her heart and faith that she will have children.

  • Stephanie January 9, 2017 at 8:18 am

    I am reading through the Bible with the one year bible through my youversion reading app. My daughter is using the Bible similar to yours & we are holding each other accountable! Really looking forward to what God is going to show me this year in his word.

  • Meredith January 9, 2017 at 8:23 am

    My sister sent me a daily scripture writing plan for the months of December and January. I have enjoyed this so much! I feel like I absorb and understand it more when I write it down word for word in my journal. There are several monthly plans on Pinterest that correlate with the season.

  • Melissa January 9, 2017 at 8:27 am

    I’m so happy to see this post today. This topic has been on my mind for the last few days and today, before I saw this, I dug out a daily Bible that I’d tried to study in the past — to try again.
    Great timing! Feels like someone is speaking directly to me..
    Thanks for sharing…today and everyday.

  • Chantelle January 9, 2017 at 8:35 am

    Thanks for the devotional recommendations. My fave over the years has been My Utmost for His Highest (Oswald Chambers).
    I’m making your chili mac and cheese tonight for supper. I need something to look forward to in this deepfreeze that I live in!!

    • Mix and Match Mama January 9, 2017 at 1:11 pm

      My Utmost for His Highest is like the greatest book ever written :).

  • Emily Black January 9, 2017 at 8:36 am

    Thanks for sharing! New Morning Mercies by Paul David Tripp is incredible. It challenges me every day and shares the gospel in a way no other devotion has been able to do. (In my opinion! 🙂

  • Anna H. January 9, 2017 at 8:39 am

    Great books! I didn’t know about Jesus Always. I’ll have to get that one, as I love Jesus Calling! Every day, I read Moments with God for Moms by Karen Stubbs. She does a really good job of connecting Scripture with a Mom’s role in her daily life. Here’s a link: http://www.birdsonawiremoms.com/new-products/moments-with-god-366-devotions

  • April January 9, 2017 at 8:41 am

    Thanks for this! I’ve been looking for suggestions for a daily devotional. I just ordered a copy of the One Year Bible. This post came at a great time. Thanks again! Blessings!

  • Melody Byrd January 9, 2017 at 8:41 am

    I’ve started reading through the bible in a year before & have never finished but this year I’m going to do it! Actually our entire church is on a mission to do it. We are holding each other accountable, focusing some bible classes and sermons around the readings for that week as well. We are using an app that I really love called Read Scripture. It includes videos that are great and my kids love watching them too, as well as a Psalm at the end of every reading. It is not an exact chronological order reading but close & so far I’ve loved it. Normally, I like to read out of my bible but this app makes it so easy and if I miss my reading time in the morning (I’m trying to become a morning person!) then I can read it anywhere because I always have my phone. But when I’m sitting down in the morning reading it off the app, I like to have my bible handy (I have the same one as you) to reference things. I also jot down things if I want to chat about them with Gavan later. Anyways, Just thought I’d share that with you in case you want to check it out! Happy Reading & God Bless!

  • Aimee Harmon January 9, 2017 at 8:48 am

    Sarah Young also has a “Jesus Calling” for kids. We just started it with our almost 5 year old this year. He has really enjoyed it and so have we! It’s simple to understand even for little ones and it’s so thought provoking even for adults! Give that a try with your kids. I have daily quiet time every morning, but in the evenings we try to do quiet time with him too. Sometimes it’s not so quiet and sometimes I just want to get done. But I’m hoping getting that little bit of Jesus in his day will stick and he will remember that and cling to God’s word as our son gets older. (That’s my sermon today! lol) Oh, we plan to continue this when our other child arrives….from China! Hopefully this fall! #adoptionrocks

    • Brittany January 9, 2017 at 3:08 pm

      Ordering this too! Glad you shared this!

  • Erica @ Whimsical September January 9, 2017 at 8:49 am

    Just ordered the One Year Bible! My dad has been using it forever, but I needed your reminder about it. Thank you!

  • Abby January 9, 2017 at 9:09 am

    Such a great list of recs. Thanks for this post!

  • Kelsey January 9, 2017 at 9:10 am

    Love this! I didn’t use to be a morning person but I am becoming one. It’s so nice getting my devotional, workout and quiet time in the morning that it’s starting to become a habit!

  • Angela Ellingson January 9, 2017 at 9:14 am

    So encouraging! I’m reading the Bible in one year for the first time this year. I’m so excited about it! I gifted Jesus Always to a few people for Christmas. Thanks for being so bold in your faith. Very inspiring!

  • Tracy Doubts January 9, 2017 at 9:35 am

    Shay, thank you so much for this great blog and for sharing so much of yourself with your readers. While it is evident that you have many strengths, your ability to inspire and lead women is always present. Your inspiration has led me to seek a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ and for that gift I can never thank you enough!!

  • Mandi Moore January 9, 2017 at 9:51 am

    Love this! You inspired me to start the One Year Bible and so far I’m loving it. Definitely feeling more accomplished in the mornings actually reading the Bible and not just a devo. I also love the idea of a gratitude journal, maybe you can do a IG photo challenge to post something we’re grateful for each day! LOL
    Love your posts and your inspiration!

  • Hayli January 9, 2017 at 10:37 am

    Love this! I’d love to read more spiritual posts from you! And love the chronological Bible, too!

  • Jill January 9, 2017 at 10:45 am

    Thank you, Shay. 🙂 I needed this today…

  • Emily January 9, 2017 at 10:54 am

    Since you said you have been blogging for almost 10 years .. i was interested in seeing the beginning. How AWESOME how God has used this blog! From you not thinking it would be anything to so many people reading it and hearing about how Jesus loves them. God is so good!

  • Amy January 9, 2017 at 10:57 am

    I started the One Year Bible this year thanks to you and it is such a great way to delve into the Gospel! I also have some Sarah Young books as well. I also started a journal called 52 Lists for Happiness, and its a great way to find that kind of gratitude every day! Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  • Kerry Dorman January 9, 2017 at 11:12 am

    I have the same Bible as you and I love it! I also do the Bible in a year and this version that you talked about today is by far my most favorite. My quiet time consists of those two things and the Bible study I’m doing (Currently Kay Arthurs Revelation study). As for devotionals, my kids read one to me on the way to school (Currently Duck Commander Devotions for Kids)… they are really loving it! I’m totally starting today on the three things gratitude journal, thanks for a great idea!

  • Katy January 9, 2017 at 11:58 am

    Hi! I’ve never commented before but I enjoy reading your blog and I love today’s post. Love that you wrote down something to be thankful for for 13 yrs!! It spoke to me as I’ve been wanting to get started with something like that. Awesome testimony!

  • Jordan January 9, 2017 at 12:22 pm

    I second the New Morning Mercies suggestion!! I read that every day last year and it changed my life. Very applicable to everyone at any stage of life. Thanks for always being an inspiration to your readers, Shay!

  • Molly A Klein January 9, 2017 at 12:28 pm

    Thanks for the recommendation for the1 year bible my mom and I just started this year and we email each other every day with our thoughts! ????

  • Lindsay @ Lindsay's Sweet World January 9, 2017 at 12:40 pm

    I ordered the devotional Jesus Calling after seeing your posts about it, and I just started January first. I’m usually always rushed and crazed in the mornings, so now I’m trying to incorporate some quiet time into my mornings… it really makes the day go smoother.

  • Sara January 9, 2017 at 12:42 pm

    Thank you for this post!

    I am trying to be more intentional in my quest times.

    Would you do a post on how you keep your paperwork, calendar, school work, etc organized????!!!

  • Danielle Schrader January 9, 2017 at 12:53 pm

    I have been reading through Jon Courson’s Application Commentary every morning for about 15 min (about a chapter a day) . I started in Genesis at the begging of 2016 and have made it through Samuel so far. The Jon Courson’s Application Commentary Bible puts the commentary right in line with the text – so its like having a sermon every day! I can’t believe how much inspiration I have gotten from some of the books of the bible I would never have gone through on a normal basis. Who knew Leviticus had so much to say for the every day life! The long and shot of it is its a 15 Min that I never regret!

    Thank you for sharing your faith and life!

  • Lisa K. January 9, 2017 at 12:55 pm

    I wanted to love Jesus Calling when I first picked it up, but something about it made me uneasy and then I did some research:


    Some of the things mentioned…Sarah Young claims that she speaks for God; She mimics occult practices; She is inspired by untrustworthy models; Her emphasis does not match the Bible’s; Her tone does not match the Bible’s.

    Of course, this is just one guy’s opinion of her, but there are other Christian leaders, pastors, etc. with similar concerns. I’m not bashing anyone who reads Jesus Calling/Always, just some food for thought to add to the conversation. Even the page you shared in your pic…if these are supposedly Jesus’s actual words to her (making them equivalent to Scripture), why does He sound so much different from the Jesus in the gospels?

  • Amie January 9, 2017 at 12:57 pm

    I have read about you doing this in the mornings over and over and I think maybe just maybe this time I will actually try it! I have been wanting to but just need to make the transition 🙂

  • Desiree | Beautifully Seaside January 9, 2017 at 1:53 pm

    Love your daily reads Shay! I read scripture everyday too and it makes such a difference in how much joy I feel throughout the day. Blessings to you in the new year! XOXOXOXOXO

  • Tracy Doubts January 9, 2017 at 2:18 pm

    Hinds Feet on High Places by Hannah Hurnard is a great book. There is also a children’s version I believe.

  • Brittany January 9, 2017 at 2:58 pm

    Seriously came to your blog today to look for old post about devotionals. I am ordering both the one year bible and Jesus calling today! And now I’m totally convinced God laid this post on your heart and your blog on mine for a reason!

  • Maria January 9, 2017 at 4:52 pm

    The passage you shared from “Jesus Always” was just what I needed today! Thank you for sharing these and your faith so freely:)

  • Jenna January 9, 2017 at 5:33 pm

    Thank you for posting this! I have Jesus Calling and have always enjoyed it, but I’ve been looking for something more. I’ve been going through things recently where I feel down and like life isn’t working out the way I had hoped, but I’m trying to trust in God and be positive. Back in November, I did a gratitude journal for the month, but I only wrote down one thing and sometimes that was a struggle. I need to do it more consistently and try not to overthink it. I really agree that it helps your attitude and outlook, and I definitely want to be a more thankful person. I’m going to check out some of the devotionals that your readers suggested, too!

  • Karen January 9, 2017 at 6:31 pm

    I just ordered The Jesus Bible to go along with my Bible in One Year. It’s from Passion Church ~ Louis Giglio. Thejesusbible.com has all the info if it sounds interesting…..I can’t wait to dig in!!

    • Mix and Match Mama January 10, 2017 at 4:25 am

      I adore Passion Church!

  • Tonya January 9, 2017 at 7:40 pm

    In October I started using the First 5 App from Proverbs 31 Ministries. I love it! It even has an alarm to set so when you turn off your alarm clock you slide to view your daily devotion. I also love the community and encouragement you give and receive through the comments.

    At night I read Beth Moore’s Voices of the Faithful, Inspiring stories of courage from Christians serving around the world.

  • Debbie January 9, 2017 at 8:21 pm

    I needed this today. Ordering Jesus Always today and getting out my One Year Bible and making it my goal to actually finish it this year. Thank you!

  • Megan Butler January 9, 2017 at 8:42 pm

    I need to check out Jesus always! Sounds like a good addition to my collection!!

  • Shelby January 9, 2017 at 10:46 pm

    Hi Shay, How old were you when you started your daily Bible time independently? I would love a blog post about things your parents did raising you and also what you’re doing with your own children in regards to their faith.

    • Mix and Match Mama January 10, 2017 at 4:25 am

      I was 15 when I started…and that’s a great post idea!

  • Danielle January 13, 2017 at 7:11 am

    You are so inspiring!! I was already reading Jesus Always every morning but just real quick before work. I started waking up 30 minutes earlier than usual this week to take time to read the Bible that you recommended, as well as, Jesus Always, and pray. It has so much more meaning now that I can connect it to what I read in the Bible that day. It is so nice having that time in the morning to reflect on my goals of the day. I have also been journaling 5 things that I am grateful for each night. It truly is encouraging to look back on your day to see all the beautiful things that are happening. Thank you for posting!

  • Stc611 January 19, 2017 at 1:44 am

    I have both the One Year Bible and Jesus Always thanks to you. I’ve loved reading them each day. Jesus Always is written in a way I needed so much at this point in my life. And the book is gorgeous! I loved it instantly. Thank you for prompting me to get both of these books. You’ve inspired me more than you know!

  • Aja January 22, 2017 at 6:46 am

    Vacations are my downfall! When o went to NYC for a week this December I totally fell off my Advent reading plan and never really got back in the groove. Do you take your One Year Bible with you when you travel? Take pics of the pages and read it that way? Catch up or read ahead? I have several big vacations planned for this year so I’m already trying to decide how to handle keeping up with my Bible reading while traveling.

  • Stacie steward January 26, 2017 at 12:40 pm

    I’m going to buy a journal today and doing the things I’m grateful for. I’ve been wanting to do this for quite some time and this was the push I needed! Thanks for sharing. I also read the Bible every day usually on my youversion but there’s nothing better then getting out your childhood/teen bible and diving in! Blessings and thanks for sharing.