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‘It’s a Great Way To Start Your Day’—Actress Patricia Heaton Reflects on Reading the Bible in a Year

Patricia Heaton
Screengrabs via Twitter @PatriciaHeaton

Actress Patricia Heaton took to Twitter to celebrate a milestone accomplishment that is a perennial goal for Christians of all tribes and traditions: she read through the entire Bible in one year. 

“A year ago today, I decided that I would finally, for the first time in my life, read the Bible all the way through,” Heaton said in a video. “And I got this plan from The Gospel Coalition, and I finished it today!”

“I can’t believe it,” she continued with a chuckle, going on to show viewers the pages she used to check off the chapters she had read, which were tattered from use and stained with rings from a coffee mug. “I just went through and kept checking off and checking off every day.”

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Heaton, who is perhaps best known for her role as Debra Barone on the popular sitcom “Everybody Loves Raymond,” has often been vocal about her faith. She was raised as a devout Catholic, and one of her sisters is a Dominican nun.

Reflecting on the experience of reading through the Bible in a year, Heaton said, “You know, some days were just revelatory. I saw things I had never seen before. And some days were kind of a slog. You know, just going through it and pushing through and just feeling like, ‘I don’t even know what any of this is about’—mostly Old Testament stuff.”

In the comments below the video, Heaton said that she used the NIV translation of the Bible, but would “sometimes use The Message for the Old Testament to make it more palatable.”

Heaton also showed viewers where she had written down all the names for God that are found in the Bible. Listing some, she said, “He’s a provider, healer, banner, shepherd, righteousness, sovereign, the beginning, the end. He sees me…the Most High, good shepherd, physician, wonderful counselor, mighty, everlasting, Prince of Peace, Lion of Judah, El Shaddai, God Almighty.” 

“So, it’s pretty cool,” Heaton said. “And it’s a great way to start your day.” 

“There were, you know, times where I didn’t do it for a few days, and then I had to do a big catchup,” Heaton conceded. “It was always the best to just plough through every day. Set that time aside. And set some time aside, you know, to meditate on it and pray.”

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“I’m gonna wait till January 1 and start again, maybe try a new plan,” Heaton said. “I highly recommend it.”