Tag Archives: quiet time

Training For Godliness – Avoiding Injury

Each year, I take one week off from writing to help me refresh and reset. This is that week. To help you stay faithful to your daily devotional time, I’m bringing back a series I wrote a few years ago on disciplines we as Christians need to have. Enjoy and I’ll be back next week with all new devotions.

Avoiding Injury

The way to avoid or minimize injury in sports is to do all the right things. The same applies spiritually. One of the things you can do to prevent injury is stretching. When is the last time you stretched yourself spiritually? I’m not talking about a faith pledge financially. I’m talking about stepping out in faith and you really doing something positive for the Kingdom. It could be walking up to a stranger and just telling them, “God wanted me to tell you that He loves you.” It could be fasting for three days with water only to grow closer to God. It could be any number of things that you don’t think you can do for God.

Henry Ford once said, “Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right.” The same thing applies spiritually. If you don’t stretch yourself and think you can do more than you are right now, you’re right. You will stunt your growth and never do more than what you’re doing today. God wants us to step out of the boat like Peter did. When he saw Jesus walking on the water and asked Jesus to call him out of the boat, I’m sure his mind told him that he couldn’t do it. Thankfully his faith in God told him that he could. Have you asked jesus to call you out of your boat? Which voice are you listening to? Stretch yourself.

Pre-Training

So before you begin your in depth training for Godliness you need to be able to do some things first. You need to be able to read God’s Word without interruption. How much you read isn’t important in the beginning. It’s not about reading a chapter a day or at a time. God can speak to you with just one verse, but you need to be where you can hear Him speak to you through it. Get away from all distractions and the noise in your life. Jesus went away from others to hear God. You should too.

You also need to be in the habit of praying and listening. Prayer is important. I think contemplative prayer is even more so. I’ll do a post on this soon because it’s more than just praying what comes to mind. It’s purposefully thinking through your prayers. That’s something you work up to though. Beyond just praying, you need to learn to quiet your mind and give God time to speak to you. We, like Elijah in I Kings 19:11-14, think that God speaks loudly all the time. We want Him to speak to us audibly. Elijah saw a windstorm that tore rocks loose from the mountains, but God’s voice wasn’t there. He saw an earthquake, but God’s voice wasn’t there. He even saw fire, but God’s voice wasn’t there either. After the fire, there was a gentle whisper of God’s voice. That’s how God speaks to us. We need to get to where we can hear His voice, then quiet our mind and listen for it.

Tomorrow I’ll wrap this series up with some final thoughts and encouragement to continue your training for Godliness.

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Feed Your Soul


If you were to ask my friends, they would describe me as a foodie. I live to eat. I don’t just consume food just because my body needs it. I spend lots of time researching and looking for great tasting food. I read reviews, look at menus, watch videos, check different websites, ask locals and use a variety of apps before I go out to eat. I like to say, “You only get to eat three times a day. You need to enjoy it.”

Whether you’re like me or you just eat to live, we all have to eat if we want to stay alive. Without food, our body begins to consume itself until we die. Food is a necessity if we want to live. The same goes for our soul. It needs to be fed in order to stay healthy, but the food it eats isn’t physical. Ecclesiastes 6:7 says, “We work to feed our appetites; Meanwhile our souls go hungry” (MSG).

So what do we feed our souls? In Matthew 5:6 Jesus said, “You’re blessed when you’ve worked up a good appetite for God. He’s food and drink in the best meal you’ll ever eat.” I believe our souls are fed when we spend time with God. They are recharged and are given strength when we take time each day to spend quiet time alone with God. Remember the Psalmist said, “O taste and see that the Lord is good!” (Psalm 34:8)

We wouldn’t miss a meal for our physical body. Why do we miss them for our spiritual one? Only one will last forever. We need to take time each day to feed it good food to make it healthy. It’s not good for us to have our soul go hungry. Every meal you feed it doesn’t have to be Instagram worthy just like every meal you feed your physical body doesn’t. Your soul lives to eat. Why not feed it as often as you can? A full soul has the potential to be a productive one.

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Full Speed


My son is every bit of six years old. He runs through the house at full speed, laughs so hard he can’t hear anything and has to do everything himself. There are many times when I’m trying to give him instructions, but he keeps going. I yell his name to get his attention, but he keeps going. I’ve tried with everything in me to get him to hear me, but often I get no response while he’s moving around. It’s not until I have to get up, go over to him and get in his space that he hears me or realizes I’m trying to give him instruction. 

I know he probably gets that from me, and as I think about it, I wonder how often that describes me today. How often is God trying to get my attention, screaming my name, but I can’t hear Him because of my busyness? I’ve got a lost of things to do, my mind is racing with ideas of what’s next and I’m halfway looking where I’m going. I don’t stop until God gets in my space and says, “Hey! I’m trying to talk to you. I’ve been trying to get your attention, but you won’t stop and listen.” 

In those moments, I wonder how long He had been trying to get my attention. I have to think back, replay the last little bit and see all the ways He was trying to get my attention. I then seek forgiveness for being to busy to hear Him and renew my commitment to slow down. That’s when I’m reminded of Psalm 46:10. It says, “Be still, and know that I am God!” (NLT) I think the Psalmist was a lot like me and that was his message from God that goes out to all of us who run full speed all the time.

I’ve learned that God cares less about my busyness and more about my ability to stop and listen. I’m learning from my son that when I’m running around, I can’t hear what’s being said. I can’t focus on what I’m supposed to. How many mishaps could have been prevented? How many blessings have I missed out on because I was too busy to hear Him? If you’re like me, let me encourage you to take time to stop today and listen. Chances are that God is calling your name and is trying to get your attention. 

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The Quiet Place


I jokingly refer to Egypt as the land of a thousand car horns because Egyptians use the horn instead of a blinker. I once tried to count how many honks I heard in a ten second span, and couldn’t do it. There were times when I just wanted some peace and quiet. To get away from the noise, I would rent a sail boat and have them take me to the middle of the Nile. It was my little quiet place where I could stop and think as I watched the sun set behind the pyramids.

Where is your quiet place? We may not love in the land of a thousand horns, but we live in a noisy world. There are so many distractions in our lives that it’s hard to find that place of serenity. It’s that place where our phone isn’t buzzing, kids aren’t vying for your attention, social media doesn’t exist, and no one bothers you. We all need that space in this world or we’ll go crazy!

In Psalm 27, David found it. He wrote, “When besieged, I’m calm as a baby. When all hell breaks loose, I’m collected and cool. I’m asking GOD for one thing, only one thing: To live with him in his house my whole life long. I’ll contemplate his beauty; I’ll study at his feet. That’s the only quiet, secure place in a noisy world, The perfect getaway, far from the buzz of traffic” (MSG). David found his quiet place in spending time with God.

Each of us needs to set aside time in our day to spend time with God. We need it to keep our perspective so we can remain calm and cool no matter what’s happening in our lives. That quiet place reminds us that God is in control and that He’s got you. Resting in His presence quiets the fears and doubts of the unknown our lives. His Word gives us the hope and encouragement we need. If you’re there right now, take some time to find that quiet place in Him. You’ll be glad you did.

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Intimate Conversations 


I like to tell people that I’m the busiest person I know. I carry two phones with three numbers attached to them. I work a full time job, write, do ministry, and drive for Uber at night. I look around though, and see other people who are just as busy. Somehow in our world, we equate busyness with value. The more we do, the greater we are. Even in the Church, we have adopted this mentality with ministers and lay leaders. We are always on the clock, we never take a sabbatical, and we never say “no” to anything or anyone.

That’s not the example Jesus gave us for ministry. Even though He was very busy and sought after, Luke 5:16 says, “Jesus often withdrew to the wilderness for prayer” (NLT). The model He gave us was to step away from our duties often to spend time alone with the Father. He understood that it is not wise to continually give without going to the Father for a refill. As our lives become more busy, our intimate conversations alone with God in our prayer closet should increase.

Revival is coming and we need to be in the habit of stepping aside from all the distractions to spend time alone in prayer. Performing miracles, leading the lost to the cross, caring for the poor, and preaching are not supposed to take the place of our quiet time with God. He wants us to understand that busyness equals distractions and distractions keep us from going into our prayer closet. We can’t have the power of God flowing through us until we have been intimate with Him. God has always valued alone time with Him more than our busyness for Him.

Think of Martha and Mary. Martha was the one who welcomed Jesus into their home and as Luke 10:40 says, “was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing.” Mary was the one who was just sitting at the Lord’s feet listening. When Martha complained that she was doing all the work, the Lord replied, “There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it.” Each of us need to discover what that is as well. We need to take time often to just sit at the feet of Jesus, away from the distractions, and listen. That is what Jesus values and what we should value as well.

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Free To Pay

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It’s Free Friday! Today is the day you let go of the things in your life that keep you down or hold you back. To celebrate, I’m giving away “Experiencing God Day By Day: The Devotional Journal” by Henry and Richard Blackaby. Keep reading to find out how to enter.

I’ve thought a lot about the law of sowing and reaping lately. Growing up, it was applied to school work. If you want good grades, you have to sow the seeds of studying. In sports, if you want to get better at basketball, you have to sow seeds in practice. In life, if you want to have good kids one day, you better sow seeds of being a good kid today. What you sow now, you will reap when you’re older. I’ve heard it applied to just about everything because it’s as much of a law as gravity.

We all believe in gravity which is why many of us stay away from ledges and refuse to walk under heavy, dangling objects. What if we applied that same belief into the law of sowing and reaping when it came to our relationship with God? What if we really thought that if we sowed time alone with God, we would reap immeasurable spiritual benefits? I’m afraid that most of us live unproductive Christian lives simply because we refuse to make time for God each day. We’re satisfied with the bare minimum.

Each day when I go to work, I drive past a toll lane. As I get closer to it, I begin to reason with myself about the cost of driving in it. This particular toll lane has a fluctuating price that depends on traffic. I’ve seen it as low as $1 and as high as $7. Each day I choose whether I’m going to pay the cost to get to my destination faster or to sit in traffic inching along. I have to determine whether the price is worth it. Most people sit in traffic every day and never consider the toll lane because they don’t want to pay the price.

In the same way, most Christians don’t want to pay the price of getting up early, staying up late or skipping lunch with co-workers in order to spend time with God. As a result, their lives inch along and they get frustrated. They wonder why it takes so long to get to their destination in life. It goes back to that law of sowing and reaping. If you don’t plant the seeds and pay the cost, you will live life in a slow moving traffic jam getting frustrated. You’ll see other speed past you and make excuses that it’s just easy for them or that they are somehow more blessed than you. The truth is that those who excel in their walk with God pay the high cost in secret and God rewards them openly.

Where are you today? Is your life inching along in traffic? Are you frustrated that you haven’t gotten to that next level with God more quickly? Have you bypassed the toll lanes because you weren’t willing to pay the cost then? The great news today is that God won’t keep you in traffic if you start paying the cost today. God will begin to bless you and reward you once you plant the seeds of spending time alone with Him. He will move your life along if you will free yourself of the things that keep you from paying the cost. He will be free to bless you with a productive, vibrant, healthy spiritual life when you start planting the seeds of alone time with Him. I can tell you the cost is always worth the benefit when it comes to God.

If you would like to win the “Experiencing God” devotional and journal by Henry and Richard Blackaby, all you have to do is go to my Facebook page here and “like” it. I will randomly pick one person tomorrow (March 1, 2014) who has liked my page. If you have already liked my page and enjoy reading these daily devotionals, you are already entered. Please invite your friends to like my page so they can receive encouragement from God’s Word too.

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Dealing with Distractions

I always seem to get distracted during my prayer time on Monday’s. My mind tries to think through the week ahead starting with the meetings today. I catch myself going down rabbit trails in my mind when I should be praying. It’s hard to concentrate on what I’m reading in the Bible when I’ve got other things popping up in my mind. When I try to be quiet before The Lord, songs, music, thoughts on how to resolve situations and schedules start to cloud my mind. Not to mention, it would be nice to sleep a little longer since it is Monday and the weekend is officially over.

Do you ever go through this? Do you find it hard to keep your mind focused on God when you’re supposed to be spending time with Him? I think most of us do. Our minds are problem solvers and are constantly thinking through how to fix things in our lives. It happens in our prayer times because that’s the only time we’re still enough to let our minds work. We force ourselves to stop and concentrate on God, but our mind has other plans.

If we look in the Gospels, we see that Jesus made it a habit to get away from everything, go off to secluded places and spent time with God. Many of us would love a secluded place just to get away from the kids, noise, obligations, phone calls, text messages and emails! But to spend time with God, we need to find that place to spend with Him, not just to escape our daily life. As a kid, I remember that any morning I got up early, if I went to the living room, I’d find my mom there with her Bible and a cup of coffee. That was her time.

Each of us have different schedules, different obligations and different situations. There’s no one size fits all approach to spending time with God without distractions. I wish there was. Instead, it takes a conscious effort on our part to find that time and place where we can spend uninterrupted time alone with God. It’s up to us to turn off the phone, get away from noisy distractions, find a secluded place and to get alone with God. I struggled for years with this. I didn’t prioritize my time with Him so I allowed the distractions to take over that time.

Now, I’ve made a decision that I won’t let anything interrupt that time. The only time I found on my schedule to do that was my commute to work. When a thought other than one that is God-centered pops in, I check it, push it out and quiet my mind again. I turn the radio off, keep my eyes on the road and treat it as I would if I were having a meeting. Doing these simple things have helped my spiritual life to grow more in the past two years than the previous decades combined. It all started with the decision to make it a priority above everything else.

I’m curious to see how others have found time in their busy schedules to spend time alone with God. What do you do? What best practices do you have that help you stay on track with your quality time with God? How do you keep other thoughts from distracting you? How do you make time when there seems to be none? Please share so that all of us can benefit and find ways to improve our own quiet time with God. If we learn to spend quality time with God, our lives will have more quality.

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