Reading the bible youversion


When the YouVersion Bible app first added streaks and perfect weeks last year, I was a little sceptical.

I may or may not have had thoughts along the lines of: “Um… why?” “This isn’t Snapchat!” “Let’s not force it now. In the world but not of it… remember?!” But I can admit when I’m wrong (well.. most of the time I can) and quickly found myself building a nice ‘streak’ of daily time spent on the Bible app.

‘Streaks’ are a nice way to encourage yourself to read your Bible daily – even if it’s just the verse of the day – and build a healthy habit of enjoying the word of God.

When travelling home from a trip to Atlanta, USA, I crossed into the next day because of timezones but I didn’t realise. I left America on Wednesday evening and got to London on Thursday evening and at some point – while I was million feet (not entirely scientifically accurate) in the air – there was evening, and there was morning – the next day. So by the time I went to bed and woke up, my 284-day streak, along with my heart, was broken.

The funny thing about this is that it almost happened a few days early. The lovely hosts my sister and I were staying with in Atlanta had their internet/wifi cut for 24 hours at some point during our second week there. My first thought (and yes this was my first thought – I’m weird!) was “Oh no! I’m going to break my streak.” That’s not good and here’s why.

What had initially started as a great tool to encourage me to read the Bible more consistently, had became a bullet point on my bullet point list of reasons why I am such a good person.

Slowly, and subtly, pride crept into my heart and festered. It was nourished and steadily grew until that day when I realised that I was prideful. I was saying screaming, look at me, I’ve read my Bible every single day for the last 284 days – and truth be told, that’s just when they created ‘streaks’ on the app. I was reading it daily before then too.

Two claps for you, Paula! A pat on the back too!

It does not matter what number my streak was. The gag is: was God’s word actually touching and changing my heart? Or was it just another thing I do every morning. Is it as routine as brushing my teeth, something I can do absentmindedly, without having to engage my brain, heart or spirit?

This is an honest conversation between God and I. 

When I broke my streak this morning I was a little upset. It was an “aww okay” moment. I sat quietly and mourned for a second before doing what I do in most life situations – post about it on social media!

All dramatics aside (me, dramatic? Never!) I am okay with breaking my streak because it has forced me to check myself, check the state of my heart and check my priorities.

What am I doing and why I doing it?

Is it give myself the glory (even if it’s just from myself. From me, to myself.) or to reflect the glory of God?

My priorities are crazy sometimes – like in this situation, I just got a lil buzz each time I saw the number increase in days of my streak. I’d sit there looking at my phone, grinning to myself – like a weirdo. 

I now have another chance to ensure that every time I go on my Bible app (or the hardback version – although that RARELY happens. I like the app because of the easy access to different translations, notes, search, Bible plans, verse images and highlighting etc. I’m such a millennial! I bought myself a Bible in my favourite colour – purple – in a bid to try and read a physical Bible more. Let’s see if it works!), it is to fully enjoy God’s word and reflect His glory alone!


Paula Melissa xx

Paula Melissa is a digital content creator, portrait photographer and freelance journalist. Since starting a blog in 2012 and graduating from the University of Sheffield with a Journalism Studies with Employment Experience degree in 2019, Paula has gone on to create and grow her own dynamic digital media empire. She loves reading, eating and spending time with her dog, Rolfie.
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  1. Thank you for this. I woke up and immediately checked my phone to make sure I didn’t miss a day (literally sweaty palms because I was scared I missed a day) and I did miss. My streak is over and I’m back to one. I wanted so see if someone else has missed a big streak and I found this post. Then I had to check my heart just like you. I took to much pride in my high number. That’s not what God intended. Thank you for this. I needed the perspective!!!!

    1. Hey Shay, thanks for reading and commenting! I know exactly how you feel and I’m glad you found this post relatable. God bless x

      1. I was 40 perfect weeks this year and missed a day in Sept. Last year I got thru the whole year. I’d like to see those streaks as well but I cant find them.

  2. Great post. My streak actually just disappeared even when I had read yesterday so I was very upset. I was googling why it happened and came across your post and now I realize I was having prideful moments instead of desiring to learn from God’s word!

    1. Hi Debbie, thanks so much for reading and commenting!! I know how you feel. It is a very thin line to walk on. God bless x

  3. I was at 155 days two days ago and didn’t open the app (the verse of the day was short enough that I didn’t have to open the app to see it), and was momentarily devastated to have lost my streak. Then I had to admit that I’d been thinking a lot about my streak lately and how proud I was of it. I’ll be honest, it still stings a little because I beat myself up about everything, but I realize that it was more about the streak than connecting with the word of God. Sometimes I’d open the app just to keep the streak going and that’s definitely not what I want!

    1. Hey Paula, thank you so much for posting this blog! I had an 830 day streak broken yesterday and was extremely upset. But I have come to realize that this was The Lord showing me that it’s not about streaks, it’s about His Word. I remember there would be days that I would just simply open and close the app just to insure that I wouldn’t lose my streak. I would even brag to my wife about it and it did admittingly puff me up at times. My streak being broken has humbled me and made me realize that no matter how many badges I have earned, or how many plans I have read, if the good seeds did not fall onto good ground, then that would only hinder my growth in Christ, which in turn would not make me into a good tree to bear good fruit. The streaks are like a double edged sword to be honest, it can motivate you in good and bad ways, a good way to ensure a good daily reading habit, in a bad way to make you prideful and completely miss the point of true spiritual nourishment from our daily bread. Ironically when I was sulking and looking at my streak meter being back to 1, the verse above it was this;
      But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.
      James 1:22 NASB. That was truly The Lord’s way of humbling me and now this just motivated me to get a fresh start in truly applying The Word of The Lord to my life and fully walking in and abiding in it! It’s not for my glory, it’s for the glory of God! Praise God! Thank you again my sister for writing this and reassuring me that we as Christians have the same struggles with pride at times. God bless you always!

      1. Hi Jason, thanks so much for reading! This comment has just encouraged me so much. I’m glad that you have been able to hear God speak to you through this situation and I pray we all enjoy going back to God’s word again and again, without any selfish ambition in our hearts!

  4. Thank you for this! I came across it while googling how to take it off. There are times that I do read my physical bible and not the app. There were days that I know I read in the Bible app but it didn’t count. I totally agree with you.

  5. Honestly this was such a great read and convicting! Where’s our hearts in this, had to re-check myself. Like a lot of people I was also checking if others had a lost streak. I’m back down to one now but after reading this I’m all good with it! Reanalyzing my intentions and motives ha! ❤️

    1. Hi, thanks so much for reading! I’m so glad to hear that you enjoyed this post and got something from it 🙂

  6. I’ve had this happen myself due to time changes and what not. Here’s a little tip, all you have to do is set the clock on your phone back a few hours and then get on the Bible app. When you set your clock back to the correct time the streak will be back. Basically just tricks the app.

    1. Hi Shane, thanks for reading. Yes someone told me about this little trick but it only really works within a day.

      1. Thanks for tip! I recovered my streak. But I did that before reading the bible this morning, so the streak was more important to me than reading God’s word. Ah the pride.

  7. I broke the app at 615 days.. so eventually it will roll over. The reason I know that I didn’t miss is because my weekly streak is still intact.

  8. I would like to add that I have read the Bible completely three times (and soon to be four) with friends in group plans on the Youversion Bible app. All within my current streak. Before, I was terrible at being consistent at reading my bible, or reading any book. I’m just not a reader. But the streak has helped me keep going at moments.

    1. Hey Michael, love to hear that! That’s exactly why they added the feature, to help people stay consistent – glad it’s working for you. Thanks for reading 🙂

  9. I am glad I found this. I broke it off at 494, it was my birthday yesterday too and I have the bible message of the day always showing up on my home screen. But didn’t click into the app. To read a chapter. I love this app keeping me getting into a routine and having dyslexia I can read this more comfortable with the black screen.
    But as you say it’s a good time to look at myself also. 💖

  10. Thanks for posting…..yesterday I managed to break a 571 day streak. I’ve been beating myself up for the past 12 hours and realized that it doesn’t matter at all. I wish there was a way to disable that feature because it HAS become a “checklist” thing for me to do every day….just like the streak I have in my Duolingo app….and Snapchat…

    God deserves MUCH better from me!

    1. Hi Jeanne! Thanks for reading. I know exactly what you mean – it can be difficult. Our generation has such a big ‘streak culture’ but it does not matter, at all. Like you said, God deserves much better from us. Blessings x

  11. Thank you for sharing this!
    I hated the streaks in the beginning. My family would say “I have ______ streaks. What’s yours?” It was very discouraging when theirs was in the 100s and mine was 2. I had a habit of waking up in the morning and getting into my word, my physical bi me and I’ve gotten out of that recently. Holy Spirit convicted my heart. It’s okay to have a streak, but what’s the motive and who gets the glory? So good. Blessings!

    1. Aww thanks for reading Krystal!! Yes, so true. It’s always important to consider our thoughts and motives behind what we do, especially in cases like this. Glad you enjoyed this piece.

  12. Your message was EXTREMELY helpful to me. You have helped me to look at my own similar experience with a different perspective. Thank you for ‘opening’ my eyes and for sharing your experience.

  13. Paula, I couldn’t agree with you more. I lost a streak after 343 days. I actually didn’t forget to read my bible… I just had a tremendously long day and just before going to bed, I opened scripture to read a plan like I always do and that’s when I saw my “current streak” reset to 1. I cried. It was SO infuriating. I worked SO hard. Those streak counts either make you feel good about yourself (patting on the back) or irrationally depressed. I don’t think this is how our Father wants us to approach Him. Not to mention, anyone can open the Bible for 2 seconds and it counts as a streak… so the question is why is it designed like that? At this point, since clearly no one can read the Bible in 2 seconds, what is truly being measured? One’s ability to remember to open an app? That sounds like any other app game to me ?? I wrote a very long letter to youversion explaining how “off-focus” streaks were. I was literally traumatized when this happened to me, which was a huge eye opener on how far off truth-center I became. I wish I can shut this OFF… but turning the off switch simply shows current streak stuck at 1 permanently – it doesn’t actually turn it off. HORRIBLE that we’re not given a choice! Not to mention, how many folks open the app just to get a streak count without truly engaging in the word or spending time with Him? I don’t think its intentional, but can you see how Lucifer and all his demonic forces are now using YouVersion to “distract” from what is really important? That is God’s Holy word and it’s been disrespected by games and streaks. My two cents.

    1. Hi Jess, thanks so much for reading! I agree with you, just opening the app isn’t spending time in God’s word. I do think eventually YouVersion will make streaks optional. I like them, especially for people not used to consistently reading the Bible but are trying to build a habit. I would like to believe that the YouVersion team prayed before implementing steaks and hopefully it has been a blessing to more people than it has annoyed. It all depends on how you look at it and much you let your mind ponder and overthink about them. Since writing this post, I have gotten back into reading the word daily and therefore building my streak, however now, I barely notice it when I open the app. I couldn’t even tell you how many days I have reached without opening the app. So it’s worth considering a mental shift about how you think about them. Much love x

    2. Jess, I’m so agree with you. Same here from 301 down to 1 and it just gave me a bad taste but good news is His Word never changes regardless how many streaks we had. Import keep Christ center of our life. Thank you for comment.

  14. Thank you for sharing and encouraging post. It’s important to know where we stand with God. I did woke up this morning from 301 streak down to 1;) oh well it’s was my awww moment. And how you said I really need to check my heart and see if been in His Word is not some soft of streak obsession rather allow His Word nourish my heart. Thank you for point to the Christ. This post is truly encourage me and help me to set my priority. Thank you

  15. Thanks for this I recently broke my streak and I was horribly upset also. But I came to the same conclusion as this article so thank you for this post. It should be about God not us nor streaks! Thanks again!

  16. I read the beginning and was completely ready to roll my eyes. I literally expected to read someone complaining about breaking their streak but you just completely 180-d in a way that both surprised me and taught me a lesson; not only to never judge an article by its beginning, but to check my own heart too

  17. Just lost mine today at 665 days. I actually have a habit of listening to sermons/affirmations on YouTube in the morning, and then opening my app to read my verse of the day while listening to worship. Overall, it’s a half hour routine that really gets me right before the madness of work and life. I had a tremendously good day, and opened my app at the end of the night to read something from a plan I’d been behind on and it was reset to 1. My heart dropped. I even Googled whether or not the app automatically resets at 665, as to not reach “666,” even though I knew better than to fall for the hype of superstition.

    Anyway, I found this article instead of the answer I was looking for. But maybe it’s the answer I needed. I’m literally a few minutes into the shock of the reset, so maybe I’m still in denial. Lol.. I am annoyed but trying to let it go. I would like to remove the feature all together. I don’t mind a tracker being within the app to check at my own leisure, but I do think it being in your face – while encouraging when you are doing well- can prove opposite on a day like this. At the same time, I understand that it being in your face can also be encouraging, but the option should be there for how/where it is displayed. Then again, that could just be my disappointment talking.

    I’m unsure if it’s a glitch, or if I really did miss the mark to open the app today (sometimes the verse is so short, I can read it on my screen), but it’s okay.

    Thanks for the article. I’m sure I broke the record with my reset number, but seeing someone else say 500+ was a bit comforting (sorry to admit, friend. Misery- and mistakes- love company). But even more comforting was reading your post and getting this perspective.

    God bless all.

    1. Hi Sojo, thanks so much for reading! Yes, I understand how discouraging it can be and a few people have said they wish the feature could be removed to. I think if it wasn’t so in your face it wouldn’t matter as much. I have noticed that the ‘Bible App Activity’ isn’t as in your face as it used to be – although that may just be my phone – so maybe YouVerision have been considering all our comments. Thanks again for reading and glad this could be of help 🙂

  18. I lost my streak of 784. Thing is, I’ve never missed a day. It had happened before, the first time the app creators corrected it, the second time it corrected it self and now 3 days ago it changed just like that and didn’t correct. Even though I didn’t miss a day. I don’t see it as boasting I see it as encouragement to keep me going when I see how far I’ve come.

    1. Hi Cartier, have you tried getting in touch with the YouVerison team? Maybe, if it is an error, they can correct it. Totally understand where you’re coming from, it’s not boasting. A lot of time it is just encouraging. At the time I wrote this, I knew in my heart it was pride (in my case) so I had to be honest with myself. Thanks for reading!

  19. I am proud of you Paula for your honesty in sharing your heart with us. I came across this because this morning I noticed that my current streak was showing ‘perfect’ week. All along I never really thought much of it but today I got curios and decided to Google and find out what streak is all about and the rest is history. Thanks again, I get it now. 💘 u

  20. So not sure if I should post this as it seems perhaps we all need to check our hearts if the streak number is so important to us, but since it can be a powerful motivator I thought I’d share… In the exact same situation you were in, where crossing time zones caused me to lose my streak, I discovered that if I go to my phone’s time zone settings and turn off automatic time zone (set it to manually select time zone), I could set the time zone setting back to my home (Pacific) time zone and launch the app and my streak came back.

    Since then I admit I fudged it even more at times when I realized it was 12:01 or so and I had missed it (I typically do my Bible reading just before going to bed), I found I can select the Hawaii/Honolulu time zone and get up to an extra three hours.

    All that said, I completely agree that if the streak is so important we should really examine what our motivation is. For me I like to think it’s just a positive motivator to keep going and a reminder to push me on those days I’m feeling tired and think I can skip one day. If we’re tempted to open the app and just read the verse of the day to “keep the streak” then I’d suggest it’s no more meaningful than when my kids send “streaks” every day from SnapChat to people they haven’t talked to in 3 years. Hut hopefully this might help someone for whom the streak is a positive reenforcement.

    1. Thanks for reading Scott – yes, someone else mentioned the timezones ‘trick’. Like you said, if the motivation for why we’re reading is just to keep the streak then it’s no good really.

  21. I just found your site…how? Because I was googling why my days read streak in the Our Daily Bread app seemed to reset on its own because i hadn’t missed a day. Not sure what happened. But after reading your blog, I think I know…a wake up call. It’s not about the days read, but rather about the message received. Thanks for helping me put my disappointment in perspective.

  22. The streaks function actually makes me feel terrible if I miss and now I actually don’t use youversion that often. It demotivates me. Wish I could turn it off. But I have Android.

    1. Hi Robin, I don’t think they have made the functionality to remove the streaks yet. I would encourage you to maybe use a different bible app if it bothers you – I hope it isn’t putting you off reading the Word.

  23. Just logged in after a crazy Saturday Sabbath, from 835 days back to 1…tears are flowing I feel like I let myself down but mostly let down God. How could this happen I’ve been so careful and on top of it. I too was guilty of sometimes just logging in and not reading at that moment just to keep that number up. It felt like I was doing something right in the eyes of the lord, but maybe it’s just another comfort to make you feel worthy.
    God, please help me not be angry and just to learn from this, set my priorities back to you and the word, not some number.
    I’m very thankful to find a post with people’s similar struggles, now on to day 1 of the rest of my life. God bless

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