Growing Closer with God

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If you are visiting from Renee Swope’s blog, welcome!!

Hey y’all!  I know for many of you, you have already seen this post either on Wendy Blight’s or Melissa Taylor’s blog, but I wanted to add it to my post list too!  These are just some ideas to help you spend time with God each day.  I call this plan TAPP and it’s pretty simple, with a few no brainer ideas that I hope will help get you going on some fine dining with the Lord each day.

Time

God’s Word gives us direction on spending time with Him, both in the Old and New Testaments.  King David records in Psalm 5:3, that He meets with God early in the morning as does Jesus according to Mark 1:35.  The quiet of morning seems to be the prime time for God time.  It’s in this quiet before the storm, we are able to receive strength, focus, and direction for the day and give God our first fruits.  Now for me, morning makes the most sense…then again I don’t have any children and I can only imagine the dynamic children must add to a person’s morning routine.  I also know that the morning wasn’t the only time Christ set out to meet with His Father; though it seems to be His first choice.  Christ was often found ministering to God’s people, teaching and healing them.  I wonder at the complete physical exhaustion Jesus must have felt as people were brought to Him at all hours of the day…and night.   It would make sense then that there were times Jesus couldn’t meet with God in the morning and instead, He would take time later in the day {see: Mark 6:45-46, Mark 14:32-34, Luke 5:16, Luke 6:12}.  This must be my first step, I must set a Time to spend with God each day and dedicate it to Him.

For me, that is 6:00-8:00am each morning.  When will your Time be?  Will it need to change each day because of work, school, or family?  Whenever it is, put it on your daily calendar either on your phone or the one hanging in the kitchen, let your family know when this time will be and ask them to honor it by letting you be alone.

Accountability

Satan would have us believe that we can’t do this and he’s right.  On our own…we will falter every time, but “{We} can do all this through Him who gives {us} strength,” Philippians 4:13.  God is the one who will give us strength to do this and in Proverbs 27:17 He reminds us that “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”  What we need is some tangible Accountability.  We need someone who will ask us each day, “How have you spent one on one time with God today?” or “What did you learn and how does it affect your faith?”  Some of us may even need someone who will make us feel a little guilty if we skip our Quiet Time; though for others, that may be counterproductive.  Let that person know when you plan on setting aside your Quiet Time and send them a text, email or call them when you’re done, or have them call you, but find what works.

For me, it’s my husband, but whether our Accountability partner is our spouse, dear friend, sibling, co-worker, mom, dad, or whomever, we need to know someone is going to help us stay on track.

Place

We all have those places where we can focus and those places that keep us hopelessly distracted.  Our Quiet Time space needs to be set up so that when we sit down with the Lord, nothing will get in our way.  One thing I know, I cannot have my iPhone within reach of my Quiet Time area!  I have no internet at home, so my laptop posses no problem, but that little 4.9oz phone might as well be dipped in glitter…or chocolate!  When I get myself up for my Quiet Time, I have to set my phone in the kitchen or some other space in the house where it cannot disturb me.  I have also set up my little Quiet Time space with everything I need; my Bible, journal, a light, a delicious smelling candle, extra pens, pencils and highlighters, note cards, a few devotion books, and of course whatever Bible study I’m doing at the time.  {My hubby is up and about by 7:00am, so a good pair of noise reducing ear buds and an iPod are also essential for my Quiet Time space.}  If you have a little wall space, you can put up some corkboard and pin up Bible verses, questions, prayer requests, pictures, or whatever else draws your heart to God.

My space is a desk in my living room my hubby bought me for Christmas and it’s set aside for one purpose, a Place for God and I to meet.  What Place will you set aside for your Quiet Time?  It could be your kitchen table, a desk in a spare room, a nook in the laundry room or garage; I tried using my couch for a while…but found myself falling back asleep.  You could add an empty chair, a picture, or light a candle to remind you of God’s presence there with you.

Plan

What will you do during your Quiet Time?  Will it be the same each day or will you change it up each time?  Here are a few ideas…

  • Begin with a prayer.  It doesn’t have to be long; after all, the Lord’s Prayer only takes 30 seconds to say {I know, I timed it}.  Simply ask God to join you and help you understand whatever He reveals to you in His Word.
  • Spend a little time each day memorizing Scripture.  Need tips on how?  This post just might do the trick: Memorizing God’s Word.
  • Start a Bible reading plan or create one of your own.  There are TONs of reading plans out there, from reading the Bible in a year to the top 100 passages of the Bible.  Choose one and stick with it: YouVersion Bible Reading Plans
  • Purchase a devotion book or subscribe to a daily email devotional.  I recommend the Proverbs 31 Devotions which include application steps, additional resources, and extra Bible verses.
  • Use those pencils and highlighters!  God isn’t going to be upset if you mark in His book; after all, it’s His gift to us!
  • Jot down your thoughts on whatever you read.  Whether you read a devotion, passage of the Bible or answered a few questions from a Bible study, write down what it means to you and how it will affect your faith.  Write down if it made you happy, sad, mad, confused, or whatever, but simply write your reaction to what you have read.
  • Close with prayer.  Perhaps you have people who have asked you to pray for them, this would be a great time to lift them up to the Lord.  Have a long list of requests?  Divide them up throughout the week.  Wendy Blight has a great example how in week four of her study called Cultivating a Heart of Prayer.  You could also dedicate one day a week just to praying; believe me you will be able to fill that time up quickly and wish you had more time!

Whatever your Quiet Time looks like, make it your own, the above are just a few ideas and suggestions to help get you started, they aren’t rules, must-haves, or requirements.

Other posts that you may be interested in reading: Memorizing God’s Word, Praying Back God’s Word, and Prayer 101. I also have an extensive list of resources on my Developing a Faith that Sticks! Page.

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7 responses »

  1. You have shared such great wisdom here, Heather. Yes, I have read it before, but I could read it over and over again and learn from it. Thank you for teaching us how to commune with our Creator!!

    Love you,

    Wendy

    Like

  2. Pingback: Mommy Books and Quiet Time « Enjoying Each Moment

  3. Pingback: Praying Back God’s Word « Revolt

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