A quiet time.
What comes to your mind when I use that phrase, “a quiet time”?
Many people are intimidated by that phrase “a quiet time” and put it off until tomorrow.
I believe that choosing to have this daily “quiet time” will change your life in ways that you have yearned for.
My daily quiet time lasts for about 30-40 minutes … and it is worth every second of the discipline and devotion.
You might think that you don’t have an extra 30-40 minutes in your day … but you do!
Put down your phone … stop scrolling on Facebook … forfeit a 30-minute show that adds absolutely nothing to your life!
Even if you only have this “quiet time” 3-4 times a week … it will change the trajectory of your year! I guarantee it!
May I share with you my version of what it means to have a daily quiet time?
Every morning, I fix myself a cup of steaming hot coffee with just a dash of almond milk in it … and then I walk in the darkness of the early day up the carpeted stairs to my office.
I silently turn the lamp on beside a comfortable chair that envelopes me.
I take a moment to pray that the Holy Spirit will teach me more about the Father as I pick up my Bible from the small, white table beside my chair.
And then … comes the very best part of my day.
I open the Word of God.
I breathe in the glory of His presence through the sacred pages of scripture.
This year, I am reading the Bible in chronological order. I have never done this before … but this year … on the advice of Tara-Leigh Coble … I am doing just that.
(In case you are wondering … I am using The One Year Chronological Bible NLT (Softcover): Tyndale: 0031809114087: Amazon.com: Books)
God meets me in that little corner of my office.
He talks to me before the sun ever shows its face over the trees in the field behind my house.
I hear His voice as I read His Word.
I underline sentences that seem meaningful … and I circle words that add wealth to my life.
I also have a journal on the little table beside the chair … and often I will write down a scripture verse or a thought that I have while reading the powerful, transformative, miraculous Word of God.
After I read the Bible for 20 minutes or so … I just sit and meditate. I think about what I have read and how it spoke to me.
The next thing I do during these precious moments of my day is that I turn worship music on my phone. Often … it is just instrumental hymns or piano arrangements.
“Great is Thy faithfulness … Oh God, my Father!”
I love listening to the songs that thousands of believers have sung in the generations before me … somehow it is the lyrics of classic hymns that strengthen me on my journey.
“Oh! For a thousand tongues to sing my great Redeemer’s praise!”
While the music is creating a rich background melody for me … I then open my prayer journal and begin to pray.
“What a Friend we have in Jesus!”
I first write down 3 things in my prayer journal for which I am thankful so that I begin my prayer time with gratitude and worship.
1 – My home.
2 – My grandchildren.
3 – My friend, Diane.
Then I begin to tell the Father how much I love Him … and what He means to me.
“You are holy and faithful!”
“You are good and kind!”
“Your mercies are new every morning!”
“You are wise and share Your wisdom with me!”
I then begin to pray through the names on my prayer list … for my children and grandchildren … for my husband … for my mom … for friends who are in need … for situations that need a touch from God.
And finally, I have a stack of devotional books beside my blue and white striped chair, and I will spend time reading a daily devotion from several of them.
Among my favorites are:
“My Utmost for His Highest” by Oswald Chambers
“Keep a Quiet Heart” by Elisabeth Elliot
“New Morning Mercies” by Ted Tripp
“Streams in the Desert” by Cowman
I find that as I read the thoughts of men and women who have made Christ their sole devotion … my life is enriched, and my mind is renewed.
I absolutely love daily devotionals … they have added such a wealth and vivid texture to my life over the years.
As my gift to you, this cold January morning … and in anticipation of your willingness to embrace the joyful discipline of having a daily quiet time … I have decided to share with you a page from my new book that is coming out in March.
It is a 60-day devotional titled, “At Home In Your Heart”. I pray that this short devotional will fill your heart with joy and peace today!
“Let Me See the Blueprints!”
Building a home is an arduous, painstaking, and strenuous process. If your goal is to build an uncommon life that will honor the commitment you have made to Christ, you will need to carefully examine the blueprints.
When a bricklayer wants to know where the cornerstone is to be laid, he cries out, “Blueprints! Let me see the blueprints!”
When the plumber needs to know where to place the intricate pipe system, he demands, “Blueprints! Let me see the blueprints!”
And when the expert carpenter arrives on the scene to oversee the framing of the home, his words are much the same: “Blueprints! Let me see the blueprints!”
The blueprints are the single determining factor in the durability, cost, and formation of the home. No decisions are made, no nails are hammered, and no windows or doors are established without the express direction of the blueprints.
My friend, you have been given a blueprint in the building of your heart. God, the finest Master Builder in all of recorded history, has provided an eternal blueprint for your life. For thousands of years, the blueprint that you have been given has enabled men and women to build a life that is simply incomparable. This wonderful blueprint is known as the Bible.
If you deeply desire life at its finest, a shelter in the time of stormy weather, and a home that will be the treasure chest of lovely memories, you must use the blueprint that your Master Builder has provided for you. The building code established in the Word of God will guarantee that your heart will become the home of your dreams. However, you will never establish such a home without studying the blueprints.
You must not foolishly believe that you can cast a quick glance at the Word of God and instantly know what it takes to build an exceptional life. You must seriously, quietly, and daily study the Bible. Some people forlornly suppose that reading the Bible every day is a difficult task, but that is just not true. I hope that you will quickly realize that by daily dedicating your life to reading the Word, you are apt to experience rich joy and dynamic strength. You will discover with millions of others what a delight it is to dig for gold in the unmatched, powerful, restorative, and miraculous Word of God.
Now, it is your turn to exclaim, “Blueprints! Let me see the blueprints!”
Do you currently have a daily time set aside for the reading of the Word of God?
Why or why not?
What are some of the obstacles that keep you from reading the Word of God every day? Be honest!
Jesus, I pray that You would speak to me through the Word of God each day as I read it. I pray that Your Holy Spirit would give to me revelation knowledge that I have never before known or acknowledged. Speak, Lord, because I am listening to You as I read the Bible. In Jesus’s name, I pray. Amen.
God has prescribed the right way to live: obeying his laws with all our hearts. How I long for my life to bring you glory as I follow each and every one of your holy precepts! Then I’ll never be ashamed, for I take strength from all your commandments. I will give my thanks to you from a heart of love and truth. And every time I learn more of your righteous judgments, I will be faithful to all that your Word reveals—so don’t ever give up on me! —Psalm 119:4–8 TPT
Read Psalm 119:1–24.
(If you enjoyed reading this devotional, you can pre-order At Home in Your Heart today.)
Thanks for listening to my heart this week. As you know by now, my heart is truly not a perfect heart, but it is a heart that is filled to overflowing with gratitude for the life I have been given and for the people who walk with me. And, it continues to be a heart that is relentlessly chasing after God and all that He is!
Used with permission from carolmcleodministries.com.