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Reading Time: 5 min 15 sec

I tiptoe through the house, and with a cup of steaming hot coffee in my hands, I pull out my Bible and sink down into the couch.  I bask in the feeling of accomplishment that I actually woke up before the sun, ready to spend some quality time with Jesus.  

 

I glance down at my Bible and instantly feel overwhelmed. Now what? My mind is filled with questions; Do I just start reading? Should I start with prayer? How long does my prayer need to be? Do I need to use a devotional in order for this to count? Should I try opening my Bible and point to a verse?

 

I know my pastor must have said something about how to meet with God, but nothing is coming to mind and a feeling of desperation comes over me. I stumble through a prayer, feeling foolish. Who knew that having devotions could feel like so much work? I know I’m supposed to spend time with Jesus. But this just feels plain awkward.  I’m at the point where l almost feel sorry for God.  

 

My bed starts to look really good as my eyes feel weighted down. I start feeling resistant to continuing to try and meet with God. I read a chapter or two from Matthew, mumble a quick prayer and close the Bible quickly. Whew! I feel relieved that I can cross that off my list today. 

 

A feeling of dread sweeps over me at the thought of having to go through the process again tomorrow.  There has to be a better way… What do you do when no one has ever taught you how to spend time with God?

 

Have you ever felt like this?  Don’t worry you are not alone. 

 

The goal as Christians is not to learn more about God (though that is super important), but to develop a deep love relationship with Jesus.  We start developing that relationship by meeting with him each day

 

There are many different ways and tools that you can use to meet with God. However, we are going to be specifically talking about three practical steps that you can take to experience God every day:

 

1. Learning To Be Present

2. The Power of God’s Word

3. Pausing To Reflect

 

 

1. Learning To Be Present

 

You are reading your Bible and suddenly you realize that you have been staring into space for the last five minutes thinking about how you need to pick up milk, deposit cash, and  write a thank you card to a friend.

 

Distractions are a great way to keep us from connecting with God. We will always have something (or a lot of things smile) that our minds want to fixate on.  

 

For the sake of clarity, God wants to hear about your thoughts, pain, triumphs, questions, and concerns, but if we are not careful, that can quickly become the extent of our relationship.

 

One way that I have used to be present with God is to realize that the way I come into a time with Jesus is important.

 

There are times  where I am almost bent over with the mental and emotional anxiety that I am lugging into my time with God.  It could be a never-ending to-do list, a conflict with a co-worker or friend, anxiety about finances, or frustration over past disappointments.  

 

If I’m not careful, I can quickly become distracted, and find that my thoughts drift over and fixate on my latest conundrum.  As we grow deeper in our relationship with him, our goal is to live in such a way where we are present with the one who is ever present with us. We can’t be with God  if we focused on trying to figure out to solve the latest crisis.  

 

One of the most helpful steps, that we can take when we meet with God, is to call out the elephants in the room! smile  We can do this by acknowledging our distractions before God and laying them down for a time, knowing that they will be there when we are done.

 

This can happen through a simple prayer:  

 

“God, I invite you into this time. My desire is to know you and experience a deep love relationship with you. I feel very distracted by…  I lay my distractions at your feet. I ask that you will help me be present with you during this time. I thank you for your grace and love, Amen.”  

 

As you find your thoughts drift (and they will) during your time with God, gently bring your thoughts back to him.  God is ever gracious and delights in your effort to hang out with him.

 

 

2.  The Power of God’s Word 

 

The Bible is all about God’s desire to have a love relationship with us.  The purpose of daily time with God is not about learning more about him, but actually learning to experience a relationship WITH him. How exciting and humbling that the God of the Universe desires to have a best friend relationship with us!

 

There is no substitution for time spent in God’s word. Books, devotionals, and bible studies are great and can be helpful but they cannot replace the transformative power of the Bible. We want to spend this time reading the Bible for transformation, not information.

 

We want to create elbow room to allow the Holy Spirit to transform our lives through the power of God’s word. One way we can do this is by reading slowly, reflectively and incorporating silence into our time with God.  

 

What I love about this approach to reading the Bible is that it forces you to slow down. Your purpose morphs from getting it done, to allow God’s word to transform your soul. This idea sounds deceptively simple until we find ourselves rushing to get through our time with God, in order to move on to other things.

 

In our accomplishment driven culture, we can so easily turn daily time with God into another thing to check off the to-do list.  We see this come into play with the many Read the Bible in a Year studies. We do need to know the Bible but not at the expense of a living, breathing relationship with God.   

 

3. Pausing To Reflect

It is important to stop and reflect on God’s transforming word. We want to soak in the truth of the Bible allowing it to run deep within us, transforming us from the inside out.  

We can do this by slowly reading the passage of scripture several times. I have found that Psalms, Proverbs or the gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John) are a good place to start.

 

1st Time) Read the entire passage.

2nd Time) Read slowly- Paying attention to new perspectives.

3rd Time) Read slowly- Ask God to highlight a word or phrase.

4th Time) Read slowly- Reflect on the word or phrases and ask the Father to speak to you.

 

Pray and tell God your thoughts. Ask what is the Lord inviting me into?  How can I respond?

You can incorporate times of silence, journaling or drawing to reflect upon your experience.

 

When you spend time with God: Invite His presence, lay down distractions, read the Bible slowly and reflectively, and spend time in prayer asking the Father to speak to you through his word.

 

If you want to know how to get started in living a deep life with God; grab our Deeper Life Beginners Guide (below). And join our community of moms who are hungry for more Jesus in their lives and in the lives of their families. 



 

 What about you? What is your #1 issue when it comes to spending time with God?   Leave a comment, and don’t forget to follow Most Important Work on Pinterest!   

 

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Alexis is the creator of Most Important Work. She has served on staff for 13 years at a local church as a children’s, youth, and now Family Life Pastor. Alexis is very passionate about helping moms and churches nurture a love of Jesus in their children through creativity, curiosity, and consistency.
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