Tag Archives: quiet time

Parented by God

My best mornings begin with a special time alone with God. When my children were small, desperation had me setting my alarm early enough to fortify my spirit before facing the breakfast chaos.

In the shelter of my bed (sitting up to keep awake) I’d enjoy a quiet time with the Lord. It was like a spiritual snuggle with my Divine Parent before I faced my own parenting role.

The Bible has so many images of the parental aspects of God’s heart. One particular morning, I was thinking about Him as “Father to the fatherless.”

I’d grown up in a loving home and my parents lived nearby. By this point I was in my mid-thirties (a few years ago now!) with a husband and children of my own. I had grown up.

But part of me often felt like an orphaned child. That morning I poured out my fears and loneliness to Him in prayer. Abba… Papa… help me to stay in the shelter of Your care. Grow me under Your watchful eye.

After a while, I felt in my heart that it was time to get up. Lord, I sense our time together is over now….

I meant it as clarification: was I really supposed to get up? I hadn’t opened my Bible or paused to listen for His leading. I’d done all the talking. Again.

A gentle reassurance interrupted me: Oh, no… we’ve just begun.

His message, inaudible but understood, resonated in my soul.

What followed was the mental equivalent of that little scoot a parent gives a toddler to send her out to play after a hug. Warmed by His love, I scooted.

Rainbow: be still and trust God

Taking God for Granted

Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused.
Romans 1:21, NLT*

Knowing God but not worshipping Him or being thankful leads to terrible depths. God lets us find out the hard way, and what’s saddest is that some never see and turn back.

The context here is people who turn away from God. They know about Him but don’t care. I wonder how many start out with that intent and how many drift away because they aren’t paying attention to God.

That troubles me, because I know plenty of good people who believe in God but don’t seem to think about Him. Sure, He’s there to turn to in a crunch, but what if their spirits harden and they won’t call out to Him for help? What if they believe the enemy’s lies about God and decide there’s no point?

And what about those of us who know and love God? This is a warning for us too, not to take God for granted and let our relationship stagnate. It takes discipline and intentional effort to keep a strong, daily connection with our God. There are so many distractions and drains on our time.

Father, I don’t want to slide away from You even a little distance. You are life itself. There’s so much more of You to know; draw me deeper into relationship with You. Let me know You better so I can more fully trust and obey You. And please, by Your grace, draw back the ones who are slipping away. Help them see, help them choose Your life. Our whole world needs You, Lord. We’re no good on our own. Open eyes, soften hearts, draw many to Yourself.

I know we’ve had this song last week, but it fits so well today: Here’s Michael W. Smith with “Draw Me Close to You.”

*New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Quiet Times with God

My child, eat honey, for it is good,
and the honeycomb is sweet to the taste.
In the same way, wisdom is sweet to your soul.
If you find it, you will have a bright future,
and your hopes will not be cut short.
Proverbs 24:13-14, NLT*

I love the invitations to wisdom we find in the Bible, and how they’re free to those who will seek God and draw near to Him. They’re not conditional on our latent intelligence or on our spotless pasts, but they’re based on God and His love for us.

In these verses we’re encouraged to look for wisdom rather than waiting for it to magically appear. The honeycomb illustration implies an eager, childlike search for something we know we’ll like.

Where do we find wisdom?

From God, and through His Book. We need a daily quiet time with Him, to read, pray, listen and learn. It’s not enough to know about Him. We need to know Him.

Daily quiet times are hard habits to get into, and easy habits to break. There’s no point getting legalistic over them or guilting ourselves, but if we can find even five minutes to get alone with God, we’ll be the richer for it.

Morning, after lunch, bedtime, whenever works best for you. Consistency helps, but some schedules won’t allow it. I heard of one person who linked his devotional moments to his morning coffee time—something he looked forward to and something he made sure happened each day.

Often we don’t have time to stop and pray, but I find as I get myself out of bed a bit earlier for my quiet time, the rest of the day goes smoother. We can’t bribe God into giving us pleasant days, but if we’re aligned with His Spirit, we’re better prepared to face what comes.

Father God, what a privilege it is to spend time with You. It’s more than our minds can grasp, but You invite us and You enjoy us. Help us make this a priority in our daily lives, not as an obligation but as a respite, a delight, and a time of refreshing and nourishing. Thank You for Your grace and Your love for us.

A good, soul-quieting song is “Draw Me Close to You,” sung here by Hillsong.

*New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.