Ideas for Spending Time with God

As I mentioned in an earlier post, one of my goals this New Year is to enjoy God more by getting up early each morning, making my favorite coffee, and spending some uninterrupted (hopefully) time with Him. I find when I have time to pray, read His Word, and reflect on it and my life–even it’s only for 20 minutes–I have a different perspective on my day. At least for a while, anxiousness and selfishness melts away, temptations lose their allure, I find myself longing for heaven, I want to serve others willingly, etc. And, then I wonder, why don’t I do this more often? Why would I ever not spend this time with God?

It’s no wonder that we experience a changed heart, mind, and attitude when we meet with God. The author of Hebrews writes, “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” The psalmist writes, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path” (Psalm 119:105), and it is “more precious than gold, 
than much pure gold” and “sweeter than honey, than honey from the comb” (Psalm 19:10.) Clearly, it’s worth spending time reading, contemplating, and applying God’s Word to my life.

Part of my dilemma at times, though, is that I can get paralyzed when trying to figure out what to do in my time with God. There are days when I just don’t know where to start. So, in an attempt to find some more tracks to run on, I asked around our staff team to see what different people are doing during their “quiet times.” Here are some of the ideas I got. Note: Please keep in mind that these are just ideas. Whatever you can do to spend time with God, even if it is only a few minutes a day at first, is great. I hope this will only be an encouragement and resource to you.

“I have recently been using the Valley of Vision book to help me pray. Specifically, the prayer, “Morning” is great to start the day off with.”
– Polly Drover, Student Ministries

“I spend my time with God reading Scripture, meditating on a verse or two, and praying. At the beginning of the year, I started a reading program that will take me through the entire Bible in one year. After I read, I spend time praying. Sometimes I pray through one of the passages that I just read. Often I use the prayers found in Valley of Vision. Either way, I pray for myself, my family, and the church.”
– Keith Simon, Pastor

“Currently, I’m reading Genesis. Also, I use Praying the Bible for your Children most mornings and read a chapter of What Jesus Demands of the World by John Piper every week or two. My main goal is to always be marrying the Word of God to my life. This is usually happening during my journaling time as I am pouring out an issue, circumstance, or sin/sins in my life to God. I write out prayers to God about what I want to see him do or I thank him for his promises. This helps give me perspective and affects the way I view and approach my life.”
– Kelley Wampler, Women’s Ministry

“I do different things from day to day. I’m currently reading in Isaiah.  I’ll read about four chapters and then pray. At other times, I’ll use the Handbook to Prayer by Kenneth Boa. Or I’ll pray through a few Psalms, pausing intermittently and using them to guide my prayers. Psalms 86, 84, 34, 25, and 103 are a few that I have turned to regularly.  But of course any psalm is great to read, meditate on, and pray through.”
– Nathan Tiemeyer, Pastor

“Just like everyone else my days are busy. Something that is frustrating to me is that by mid-afternoon, in the busyness of the day, I sometimes forget what I read during my QT and therefore don’t apply it to living my daily life. So when my QTs are going well, I try to work in reading a Psalm. I pick out a verse or phrase from that Psalm that is meaningful to me and just quickly repeat it to myself at different times during the day.”
– Jim Beaty, Operations Director

“ Keith suggested reading through the Bible in 2008…I’ve really enjoyed it, as I am reading one of the gospels, part of the NT, part of the OT, and a Psalm each day. This fits with my plan of prayer, read a section, pray again, read a section, pray, etc. It usually takes about 30 minutes and gives me the freedom to read more or less as I choose.”
– Rachel Johnson, Children’s Ministry

Let the psalmists’ prayers be our prayer this week, as we seek to spend time with God: “Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law” (Psalm 119:18), and “Direct me in the path of your commands, for there I find delight” (Psalm 119:35.)

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