Monday, February 20, 2012

How can you keep your time with God alive, fervent and meaningful?

It is so easy to let it drift into routine or even neglect it through busy-ness or other seemingly urgent things. It is easy for our hearts to get cold and even indifferent.

First, we must first recognize that there is a problem if there is no desire to spend time with God. We must pray and ask God to put a desire in our hearts to spend time with Him each day. That is the beginning point.

I love this quote by George McDonald.

“If I felt my heart as hard as a stone; if I did not love God or man or woman or child;
I would say to God in my heart, “O God, see how I trust You because You are perfect and not changeable like me. I do not love You. I love nobody. I am not even sorry for it.
You see how much I need You to come close to me, to put Your arm around me, to say to me, ‘My child.” For the worse my state, the greater my need of my Father who loves me.
Come to me, and my day will dawn; my love will come back, and I shall love You, my God.”

Second, we must make it a priority. Judy Puckett, a former church planter's wife says, "There is NO substitute for personal time with God. If you do not invest time in your spiritual walk with Christ, it will soon become apparent to everyone. You will lack the knowledge and depth you need to teach your children and others. You will lack the maturity to handle problems that are sure to arise in your church or in your family. You will lack the biblical worldview and guidance you need for life skills. And most importantly, you will lack the stability and joy that sustains you in difficult times. You can have all this by spending time in prayer and the Word."

Third, we must have a plan. We don't have to pray an hour a day, but having a planned time each day can help us follow through on what we know is right. Shortly after we were married, I noticed that the first thing my husband did was read his Bible. Some days I did, some days I didn't. After months of failure, I realized that I needed a better plan. I decided that I wouldn't read anything else BEFORE I read the Bible (magazine, other books, email, etc.). Some may think that is legalistic, but it has given me a good habit that pushes me to do what I know I need to do.

I try different things to keep my time with God fresh. I'll share one that has helped me. Often when I'm reading my Bible or praying, my mind begins to wander. Writing down my prayers, a praise thought about God, or something I got from the Bible helps me focus.

How do you keep your time with God meaningful?

Would you share what helps you keep your time with God fresh? Share a comment/idea below and I will choose one response and send you a $20 gift certificate to Amazon - so you can buy a devotional book or music or whatever you like to spur you on.

I know sometimes I may sound like a broken record because I write about this a lot. I really feel this is where we won or lose the battle for victory even in the smallest areas of our life. There is strength and power and love and guidance and all that we need... waiting for us. I need all the help I can get!