The Problem with Quiet Time

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Now it is a known fact that quiet time is essential to be a real Christian. I  mean we gotta have our quiet time with the Lord daily.  This requires no less than 25 minutes, a bible, a journal, cool pens or highlighters.  I mean ideally incense or music. We must dedicate this time of study, worship, prayer. It must be isolated and solely focused on the Lord. 

It’s really the only way you can grow in both your knowledge and your relationship with him.  One preacher put it like this: what would your relationship with your spouse be like if you only talked to them on Sunday morning? Not very good, right? That’s why you need this designated quiet time of connection with the Lord daily.  This idea worked for me in both theory and practice for many rewarding spurts during my lifetime as a Christian. Until recently. Until I realized that preacher didn’t take that analogy far enough. It was about the time that God decided to take it all the way with me. 

You see I went through something last year that threatened my very life. My good mind and all that I hold dear hung in the balance. Now what the exact “something” is really isn’t important.  Because we’ll all face those things that carve us out in a way that leaves us feeling empty and doubting we can ever be filled again.  For me, it was when my daughter unexpectedly moved to heaven on her 41st day of life.  A loss of control and a feeling of forsakeness I couldn’t have imagined. But for you it may be those divorce papers that came when you still didn’t have any quit in you. Perhaps the child that’s so disconnected from you, the times of closeness seem like a dream.  That something is as different as we all are. But our truth remains the same.  And there’s a couple of big lies floating around our truth.   Such as. . . 

You must spend a dedicated minimal quiet time with the Lord daily.  You really don’t have to. Now don’t get me wrong I hope you get to.  I hope you get to meet him like a friend and steal away some quiet moments like thieves or lovers.  I hope you whisper in each other’s ears or linger a little longer after your pen is finished writing His Love notes on your journal. But please know that it doesn’t have to be. You’re not bad or failing if it doesn’t happen because your Tuesday was crazy or your kids were sick. Please know it’s not mandatory. 

He also loves the time that you noticed His inside joke set up perfectly by what your friend wrote on that card. Those quick prayers and check in times where you invite Him,no, actually summon Him to your aid.  Did you know He is at your service 24/7?  It’s crazy that someone as important as the Lord would be at your beckon call but it’s true.  And those little breezy huddles with Jesus may not add up to 25 minutes or they may total a couple of hours- – but they count as much as every step on your fit bit does in calculating the value of your steps with Him.

God doesn’t need big pockets of time to store troves of treasures in your heart.  He’s a dude that makes strength of weakness, joy from suffering, life from death , and so on. He can score a home run with a quiet time that feels like a bad bunt. He’s God. 

Now What used to be one quiet time is now a steady diet. I can live on one meal per day. However, I am stronger, happier, more focused , etc. . . On a steady flow of meals and snacks and tasty drinks at the fountain.  And truly , to re-visit that marriage analogy- it wouldn’t be very good for my husband and I to have only a 25 minute scripted conversation once a day either. Our best days are when we’re tied together by little strings of texts and calls, check-ins and questions.  It’s quite the same with my God. 

They say to take acute grief and loss one day at a time but I tell you the truth when I say that sometimes one day is too long. On those days, I couldn’t make it to 10:00 am without a taste of truth, a morsel of scripture, a word from the Father that might carry me just two more hours to noon.  And that brings to me an untruth that may be a bit controversial. 

You must hear Gods word in context alone

I’m not discounting the value of historical perspective or cultural realities in considering scripture and understanding Gods intentions.  The more I know about these things the more rich and alive these texts are to me.  But the word of God is alive and comforting , whole and true when taken out of context and inserted to your own life. I call these little verses love notes from my Father in the form of a scripture snack. That’s right. It’s ok to just take a quick bite of loving truth – – just to have a taste of yummy God or awesome power in your day. 

 If you do an internet search on “Jeremiah 29:11 and context of”, you will find plenty of blogposts chastising you for ever taking this verse out of context by applying it to yourself. They’ll point out that God was talking to a group of people not one person, that His promises were promised after 70 years of exile and not instant prosperity.   But God didn’t only write the Bible for the people of the Bible’s times and He continuously provides fresh new meaning and messages because His word is ALIVE.  It falls on the hearts of people who are changing and growing continuously.  But far more important than that is this truth. 

God knew that you would read that verse at that exact time in His plan.   He prepared it.  He knew how it would challenge or comfort you,  increase your hunger or make you feel satisfied. That book is a feasting table made just for you. Those verses will be constructed to be prepared as deeply satisfying meals with multiple courses or as scrumptious snacks or signs of encouragement on your coffee cup, t- shirt, backpack, mirror.  Both are right and holy because it is He that sustains you. 

I want you to know that I started this very day with what would be considered a “proper” quiet time. I did a faith based fitness routine.  I read a devotional, a bible chapter, answered some questions to reinforce knowledge and content. I then wrote out some praises to God in a journal with a bible verse on it. A+, right? 

But it’s the Bible story video we worked on together (we being me and God) , my thoughtful reflection on The kindness of His words, and the fact that I can’t get Him off my mind this morning that make up my real QT today and that stands for Quality Time❤️  

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