Thursday, February 28, 2019

Start Spending Daily Time in God's Word

Last year was a real eye opener for me when it came to my private and personal time with God.  Something I realized I needed in my life was discipline...especially in my spiritual walk.  What I mean by that is real structure, real goals, a plan if you will on how I needed to prioritize my day.  God was really implanting the idea and desire for spiritual discipline and I began to seek after what that looked like for me.  I have to be quite honest here and say that I am still a work in progress, I still have a far way to go but I have seen the fruit and good work God has done in my heart and life this past year or so when I got more serious about spiritual discipline.

Today I want to talk about reading God's word.  If there is one thing that I have heard over and over again from being in ministry with Justin is that people desire to know God more.  They want to feel connected to Him and have a thriving relationship with Jesus. Yet over and over when asked if they spend time reading scripture the answer is usually "no" or, "when I have time".  Let me pause and raise my hand here too.  There have been plenty of times in my life where I have found myself here.  Friends, if we desire a personal and intimate relationship with the creator of the universe....we need to spend time with Him and that means more than attending a service on Sunday (and I am a huge proponent of being involved in a local church).  We need to read His word.  Reading the Bible and knowing His truth is everything for your walk with Jesus.  It will awaken your soul to God working around you and even make that Sunday morning ritual become an actual act of Sabbath worship for Jesus.

So...where do you begin?  Where does someone who has mismanaged their time and mixed up their priorities start?  We don't just start something new on our own and hope it sticks.  That never works.  We can't just try harder - it takes faith.  Faith in action. When God presses something down on your heart - you move and He guides.  He convicts and you act. He changes and softens your heart and you bend toward Him.  The biggest lesson I have learned in all of this is that its not perfection but its progress.  God's calling us towards Him everyday but we will never hear it unless we listen to Him...and how we listen is by reading what He has already written for us to hear.

In my journey towards discipline I realized that God had already gone before me, was pressing on my heart and I needed to take action.  I didn't need to become a biblical scholar overnight but I just needed to start.  So here is my plea to you today...just start.  Begin. One of the best resources I have found in cultivating a daily discipline for seeking God is a book called Hello Mornings.  In her book Kat Lee lays out the simplest plan for living a life focused on Jesus.  She asks you to just start with 3 minutes a day.  Now before you balk at the idea and think how little faith that 3 minutes a day seems to sound, please ask yourself the tough question...Did you spend at least 3 minutes each and everyday last year reading scripture?  Every day.  Not skipping.  Not being too busy to stop.  Wouldn't you want to answer yes?  Yes! I was someone who stopped and met with God every single day last year.  Every single day for the last 2 years, 5, 10? I believe I would rather say I was someone who met with God every day for 3 minutes than someone who planned lofty goals, didn't reach them and quit.  We all have to start somewhere and I believe God knows that.  The beautiful thing though is that once you begin, once you start, you will start to notice God working around you.  You will remember things you read about God and that will affect how you respond during your day.  You will fall in love with spending time with your Savior.  Your relationship with God will flourish because He is growing your desire to spend time with Him daily.

God loves to start new things (2 Corinthians 5:17). I believe He wants to start something new in you today.  Pause, stop, be still before Him today and begin.  He has already gone before you (Proverbs 16:9). He has promised to never leave or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5).  His word promises to be alive and ready to lead and guide you wherever He needs you to go (Hebrews 4:12).  He is already there, join Him today (John 5:17, Philippians 4:19) .

Its hard to even stop and begin to write what this has meant for my life this past year.  It doesn't mean that its been an easy year...but its been fruitful and abundant.  I'm learning more about God than ever before, He is drawing me to his side and there is no place I would rather be.  I am praying for you today.  If you need anyone to help and talk to about your spiritual walk please contact me.  I would love to help encourage you along your way.

Coming up I want to share some practical resources for applying spiritual discipline into your life.  Things that have helped me or others.  So stay tuned for some helpful tools!

Go and begin!

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