A while back, I started using the Revised Common Lectionary to help me choose a passage to preach on each week. I really like the structure that a lectionary gives to my preaching schedule, while still giving me the freedom to apply the passage as I understand it. In the end, the lectionary is basically a “Bible reading plan,” something which is more familiar to those of us who aren’t used to high church liturgy.
Recently I’ve switched over to the Narrative Lectionary. The Narrative Lectionary lays out the Old Testament background then moves into the New Testament in time for the Advent season. (If my reference to Advent seems strange, I’d suggest you read the post “The Christian calendar is growing on me“)
No lectionary is perfect; they all leave “holes” in the biblical text, passages that aren’t included at any point in the cycle. I don’t know of any system that doesn’t do that, though, short of starting in Genesis 1 and preaching every passage until you get to the end of Revelation.
The Narrative Lectionary is a bit more constricting than the Revised Common Lectionary, as it pretty much forces you into one certain passage each week. Still, we’ve found it helpful as we structure our worship times around the chosen texts.