Pastor Monte Meyer, the facilitator of parish life for the Minnesota North District, had an ambitious goal:
To get families in the Minnesota North District to read the Bible together every week.
He knew this was easier said than done. “Church leaders have tried to introduce Bible reading plans to their congregations without a lot of success,” he said. “It just gets tough to wade through all the material, some of which is difficult to understand.”
Between hard-to-understand readings and packed-full schedules, Monte knew that families had a hard time actually reading the Bible. “We struggle at times with being in the Word in our homes.” Sure, we get our weekly fix in church on Sunday, but after that, faith can fall by the wayside, getting pushed to the back burner because there’s math homework that needs to be done and all three kids need to be dropped off and picked up at three different soccer fields at the same time and there’s dinner that needs to be eaten but no one seems to like broccoli and . . .
Deep breath. I get it. Monte Meyer gets it.
He knew that a traditional reading plan wasn’t going to work. He knew families can be (unnecessarily) intimidated by cracking open the Bible—and doing that every day? Ha!
So Monte and some other fine folks at the Minnesota North District came up with the Bring It Home program. Here’s the breakdown: Every week for the month of October, families commit to reading five great stories from the Bible. Monte and his team send weekly emails that list the stories, discussion questions, and prayers for each of the five days.
To make things even more accessible for members, Monte wanted to provide families with Bible story books that faithfully present the Word of God in an easy-to-understand way.
So the Minnesota North District partnered with Concordia Publishing House and local donors to offer two Bible story books at a discounted price—The Story Bible (for families with younger children) and Know the Bible Now (for families with older children)—to make Bible reading less intimidating. More affordable. Easier.
Turns out, families and congregations were just as excited to get into the Word as Monte was. When the program and special offers were announced, here’s the reaction it got, says Monte:
A total of fifty-nine congregations ordered more than 2,600 copies of the books!
And now, in the month of October, families across northern Minnesota are reading five stories from God’s Word each week. They’re talking about God. They’re praying together.
All because one man inspired his district to read their Bibles at home.
“Just think of what God will do as we read His Word and pray together!”