I don’t know about you, but during the week I normally get in this ‘go, go, go’ mindset. When I finish one thing on my to-do list, there is always a second, third, and fourth thing that needs to be completed. If I let myself, I can go an entire week without pausing to have quiet time with the Lord.
I will be the first to tell you that having daily quiet times has not been my strong suit over the past couple of years. I either didn’t know where to begin once I started, rushed through it once I began, or never got around to it. Over time, I’ve learned the importance of being in my Bible and spending quiet time in prayer with the Lord.
“Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you…” -James 4:8
“But for me it is good to be near God: I have made the Lord God my refuge, that I may tell of all your works.” -Psalm 73:28
Isn’t it true that we put the most time and effort into the relationships that are most important to us? Something that convicts me daily is the truth that if God is really the most important relationship in my life, how much time and effort am I putting in to getting to know Him through His word? Unfortunately, probably not as much as I should.
If Jesus himself needed quiet time in prayer with God, how much more do we need this time?
“Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, ‘Sit here while I go over there and pray.” -Matthew 26:36
“Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.” -Mark 1:35
“But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” -Luke 5:16
I am definitely not perfect at this, but this is what I’ve learned works best for me. As of right now, this is what my daily quiet time looks like:
1. When I do my quiet times, I normally sit at the kitchen table. I like to have a hard surface I can easily write on, so I found the table is where I like to be. It helps to have a place that is quiet and free from noises and interruptions like our phones or computers.
2. I always try to remember to open with a short prayer asking Jesus to speak to me through His word and to show me how I can apply whatever I’m reading to my life. If I don’t do this, I find myself rushing to get through it or I get more easily distracted thinking about my to-do list. Even with prayer, it’s sometimes a battle to stay focused.
3. I recently got this cute book called “My Jesus Journal” from my sister-in-law, which basically guides my entire quiet time. It’s really great and keeps me organized so I’m not juggling so many journals/books. The book is broken up into 4 parts. The first is a Bible study section. After praying, I typically focus on one story from the Bible per day. If it’s a longer story, I spend 2 or 3 days on it.
For example: I recently read the story of Abraham and Sarah and how the Lord promised that they would have a child together even though they were very old in age. As you can see in the picture below, on the left I wrote down key verses from the story. On the right I wrote down how we are broken as humans, how Jesus constantly redeems us, and what I learned and should remember about Jesus because of his example in their story. I chose to read the story of Abraham and Sarah because I wanted to read about patience. If you’re not sure where to start, try Matthew, Mark, Luke or John.
4. The second section in the book is for prayer requests. Some days I write down my prayer requests here and other days I pray out loud without writing them down. I like writing them down though, because it’s sweet to look back on old prayer requests and see the ways God has answered.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.” -Philippians 4:6
5. Time in God’s word and prayer are the two things I try and do daily. Two other parts of the book: journaling and scripture memory, are sections I try and fill in, but not always every day. Journaling is something that is new to me, but is pretty simple because it’s basically a written letter to God. While journaling, I start with “Dear God” and write about things I’m thankful for, confessions, and prayer requests.
I use the scripture memory section as a space to compile scripture that I have memorized. It’s so easy for me to memorize a verse and then forget it if I don’t refer back to it frequently. Now I don’t have that excuse because I write them all down here.
“I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.” -Psalm 119:11
That’s pretty much how I do my quiet times every day. I hope this posts encourages you that having a quality quiet time isn’t difficult to do, it just takes a a true desire to know Jesus and a little time to figure out what works best for you. If you’re looking for a simple, helpful plan, check out the awesome book I mentioned, “My Jesus Journal!”
I’d love to hear how you do your quiet times! If you have a way that works for you let me know in the comments below!