Daily Time with God
When we make the choice to invite God into our lives, we begin a relationship with Him. As our Father, He knows us inside out. Unfortunately, we do not know Him near as well. Just as with any relationship, if we want it to be successful, we must take the time to get to know Him. As we do that, we will be transformed into the person God desires us to be. But if we are to be changed, it must be on a daily basis and that only comes from spending time with God. Understanding how to spend time with God is critical but it is something that is rarely explored.
It Begins with a Request
As Moses was leading the Israelites, he approached God in the Tent of Meeting and asked, "if you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so that I may know you and continue to find favor with you" (Exodus 33:13). He humbled himself before God, acknowledging His wisdom and asking God to teach him. Like Moses, we must also earnestly approach God and ask Him to teach us. We must be sincere in our requests and be willing to accept the truths God may open our eyes to. And just as Moses was repeatedly met with God in the Tent, we must also regularly plan to spend time with Him.
It Involves Time
You cannot get to know someone without spending time with them and planning is the key. Without a doubt, we can always find the time to do things we want to do, things we believe are important. There is no difference here. We must find time to make God a priority. In order to do that, specifically designate a time and a place to spend time with God. Write it on your calendar; make an appointment with yourself. However you do it, include it as a part of your daily routine.
It Depends on a Commitment
Just as you need determination and perseverance to successfully fight your addiction, you will also need that same commitment to be spiritually recovered as well. Each day, you will have to wake up and make a commitment to spend time with God, to let Him into your life and offer His guidance and wisdom. There will be days when you are too tired, days when you will not want to hear the truths he has for you. Those are the days you need the commitment almost more than any other because it is that commitment that will keep you focused on Him.
It Requires a Specific Plan
Although there is no one-size-fits-all pattern to spending time with God, there are specific aspects that can be included that will make your time with God more successful and personally fulfilling.
- Begin with the Bible. The Bible is the Word of God. It is inspired by God Himself and offers His unique perspective on how we should live. We cannot begin to know Him if we do not take the time to read His word.
- Have a definite objective. In order to grow from your time with God, you need to approach His word with a specific goal in mind. Read His Word with a plan instead of simply opening the book to a random page. Seek His guidance with the objective of getting to know Him piece by piece.
- Look for personal application. As you read His word and spend time with Him, look for specific ways the Word can be applied to your own life. Read with an eye for details and see where those details are relevant to you.
- Allow for questions. God does not want you to simply accept everything He tells you. He wants you to understand it, to question it. Questioning it is how you gain a deeper understanding of His plan. It is also how we grow.
- Journal. Writing down your specific thoughts to what you are hearing and reading will allow you to digest the information and really think about it. This does not have to be formal and written in a way to share with others. These are your notes, your thoughts. It can be done as quickly as jotting down simple thoughts in the margin of your Bible, or longer notes written in a journal. However you do it, write as you learn so you can go back and study your own thoughts as you learn to mix them with God.
Begin and End with Prayer
Quiet time alone with God is the only way you will get to know Him. That time can be spent studying His word, reflecting on His presence, or simply sitting quietly to listen for Him. But every moment we spend with Him earnestly seeking a relationship with Him should begin and end with prayer. Thank Him for the strength He gives, for the things He has taught. Seek His wisdom for the areas you may have concerns with. Ask Him for help. Just as Moses did in the Tent of Meeting, seek Him in humility and allow Him to teach you.