It’s no secret that life is extremely busy for the majority of us. And hopefully it’s busy in a good way… having fun with our families, enjoying our activities, etc. However, with all that we continuously have going on, one thing we need to always maintain is a part of the day I refer to as ‘Quiet Time’. It’s the time of day specifically set aside where you can think, pray, read your Bible, and prepare for anything you have going on. And it’s so necessary whether you’re young, old, single, married, working, at home, retired, or some kind of combo.
Personally, I find the best time to do it is in the morning, even if you have to get up a little earlier. I like choosing this time of day because it reduces the chance that this opportunity will get bumped and ultimately eliminated from my day if I were to wait any longer. But, obviously, this time will vary among all of us. And, if you have little ones, you just have to take it where you can get it, being that you’re much more on their schedule instead of your own! (When I was in that phase, my prayer was that the Lord would hold on to me extra tight since my Bible reading time was so scattered.)
And, speaking of those toddler years, that’s when I actually started this habit. I realized I was a much nicer mommy if I got up prior to the kids getting up, got a nice hot cup of tea in my system, and grabbed a few minutes to myself to wake up, sort out my thoughts, and lift up my praises and requests to the Lord. I often have to just sit for a few minutes and think before I start praying. (Otherwise my prayers tend to get a bit ‘wandering’).
Then, when you add in some time to read the Bible, you find that you can start your day with your mind now immersed in truth, knowledge, and purity, and it becomes your go-to book to kickstart your day. When I started reading the Word regularly during this time, I finally (for the first time!) succeeded in reading it from cover to cover. Took a couple of years (seriously), but I finally did it.
Another reason I like to dedicate this time to the Lord is that, since I depend on Him for so much, and am constantly lifting up prayer requests to Him, I just don’t feel right doing this while not devoting due time to Him. He doesn’t require it, or need it (He does just fine without my help), but I know He is pleased when we make an effort to meet Him every day. Don’t we expect the same out of our own friendships and relationships? One-way friendships only last so long.
It’s no secret that we are living in a fallen world, and getting into the Bible every day is like putting on armor for yourself as you are going about your daily activities. The temptations we face on a regular basis are very real, and Satan is extremely cunning in how he presents them to you. He is actively moving around and hoping to thwart anyone who is a threat to his efforts…
“Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” Ephesians 6:11-12, KJV
If you’re new to reading the Bible and don’t know where to start, here’s a few suggestions:
1. Any of the four Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John). These are four different accounts of Jesus’s time on earth written by men that were with Him during His time here.
2. The Book of James. Such an enjoyable book… especially if you are going through a trial. Many practical and applicable lessons in this book.
3. Psalms and Proverbs. Psalms is full of praises and prayers… reading this book is also a great way to deepen your prayers. Most of the chapters are short so you feel like you are covering some ground as you are reading. And Proverbs is excellent for giving numerous life-lessons and advice on how we should live, act, and treat others. Very straightforward in providing us instruction for our daily life.
4. Genesis and Exodus. These will get you into the traditional Bible stories you probably already know. (The Creation, Noah and the Flood, Joseph and his coat, Moses leading the Israelites out of Egypt.)
5. The Book of Ruth. A wonderful book for ladies, especially. Chronicles Ruth’s and her mother-in-law Naomi’s life after both of them lose their husbands (and Naomi loses her sons) . It is a solid example of faithfulness, loyalty, honesty, and thoughtfulness. It is also an excellent example for men as well, as it involves Boaz, the ultimate gentleman.
And once you’re regularly in the Word, you might find that you are just sort of drawn to certain sections, at different times. It often depends on what is currently going on in your life. One thing I have found, though, is that even though everything I read now is something I have read before, it often speaks to me in a different way than it did before, and I will relate differently to it than I did before. And I love that!
God provided His Word in such a way so that it feels so right to our spirits – like good, healthy spiritual food. When we are regularly in it, it constantly tweaks our inner compass to be drawn to Him, and gives us needed discernment. And, yes, it can be incredibly convicting… but isn’t it supposed to be?