One cannot deny the anticipation of summer. There is something about raking up the remains of fall and winter, making way for the arrival of spring and summer. I get excited uncovering my lawn furniture and cleaning the patio for outside living. I look forward to the fresh air, sunshine and chilling with family and friends. The letters B.B.Q. become the norm.
Yes, I get very excited about summer (it’s the little things).
With gardening season upon us, we all know that when we take the time to plant, water and pull weeds, something beautiful grows. We must continuously tend to the weeds as their only intent is to destroy the growth.
As I was pulling out my potting plants from storage, I thought about the time and effort it takes to garden. From purchasing the soil and flowers, the design of placement, continuous watering, and let’s not forget the preparation for extreme weather – in Alberta, Canada you can have summer and winter in the same week! Yet, when we see the yard in full bloom with the abundance of colors, it makes the process well worth the time. The growth is beautiful.
The same process applies to our spiritual journey. How is our garden of faith?
If I’m being honest, at times there are no roots to take hold because nothing has been planted. I haven’t taken any time to nurture my growth.
This aligns with the enemy’s most effective plan – to distract us and keep us busy. This leads to: Not now, I’m overwhelmed. Not now, I am so tired. Not now, I have so many errands. Not now, I was watching my favorite series and its bedtime. Not now, I don’t feel like it. You get the point. We have all been there. The enemy’s distractions are a destruction of our faith.
I can personally attest to the fact when I start my day with God it’s different. I am at peace. I begin my day knowing He walks before me, beside me and behind me. Therefore, I am confidently assured I will not face the day alone, no matter what unfolds.
Then, on the days my Not now kicks in, it can be chaotic and emotional. I have come to realize when I find myself irritated or overwhelmed, it’s a sign that I am spending less time with God and more time with the world.
Our Heavenly Father longs to meet with us. He wants to prepare us for the day and offer us peace of mind knowing we do not face anything alone.
Can you imagine the challenges Jesus faced every day? Yet he knew the importance of spending time with His Father. He was intentional every morning.
God’s Truth: “In the early morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house, and went away to a secluded place, and there he prayed.” Mark 1:35
Like any other relationship, we cannot grow with God if we don’t spend time with Him. Could you imagine if you fit your spouse or friend in once or twice a week, maybe even monthly? It would be a very weak relationship, if one at all. Nothing is being planted; therefore, nothing will grow.
When we take the time to start our day with God, our thinking begins to change, and our souls begin to shine. God will develop a quiet spirit inside of us. He will reveal Himself and will increase our sensitivity to Him. It’s an intimate relationship where you and God get to know each other personally. It’s where we learn more about His “unconditional” love and who He is. It’s a spiritual bond that cannot be broken.
We infuse ourselves with God so that we can glow with God and shine for God. This is a testimony to others as to who He is. We are His, and He is ours.
Spending time with God will clarify your perspective, bring peace of mind, bring fresh hope, restore joy and remind you of your purpose. Our time with God is just you and Him. It’s a sacred place of love and healing. The more time you spend with Him, the more you become like Him.
God’s Truth: “If you seek me early and diligently you will find me.” Proverbs 8:17
God’s Truth: “Spending time in silence with God can give us true rest.” Psalms 62:1
Time is your most precious gift because you only have a set amount of it. You can make more money, but you can’t make more time. When you give someone your time, you are giving them a portion of your life that you will never get back. Your time is your life. This is why the greatest gift you can give someone is your time. God deserves your time and He patiently waits to meet with you. It is one of the most important meetings of your day. This kickoff meeting ensures you are equipped to be the best version of you with God at the helm. We can’t do this journey on our own, it’s simply too hard.
God’s Truth: “There’s nothing like the written Word of God for showing you the way to salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. Every part of Scripture is God-breathed and useful one way or another—showing us truth, exposing our rebellion, correcting our mistakes, training us to live God’s way. Through the Word we are put together and shaped up for the tasks God has for us.” Timothy 3:16-17
Ask yourself when you get pulled in a million directions what is the outcome? I can bet it’s not great. On the flip side, when you spend that time with God it results in a supernatural peace and provides perspective. Our time with God is the key to our strength and success in all areas of our life. Don’t try to fit God into your schedule, work your schedule around Him.
Personally, I have struggled with my time with God. So now, I have a daily meeting scheduled in my calendar. And, just like any other meeting, if something comes up, I will reschedule my appointment with God for another time that day. It’s intentional. Here are some meeting suggestions you may want to try:
When: Try to spend time with God at the same time each day, even if it’s just 5 minutes. Choose what time of day will have the least interruptions.
Where: Choose a comfortable, quiet place free from distractions (yes that includes your phone)
What: Prepare what you need (bible, pen, notebook).
Pray: A conversation with God before and after the meeting.
Read: Read God’s word (find a bible version you relate to and bible reading plans can be a great guide).
Think: Think about what the verse means to you and consider ways you can live out what you read.
Write: Write down what you learned and highlight God’s words. Writing things down helps you to remember and understand.
The biggest battle you will face in life is your daily meeting with God. Keep it, or every other battle will become bigger. The less time we spend with God the quicker we are to fall into sin.
We cannot be disciples for the Kingdom if we don’t spend time with the King. It’s that simple. If you believe or are curious about Jesus, the place to start is being intentional with your time with Him. Nurture your faith garden, tend to its growth, and experience the beauty of God’s work. Silence the world so you can hear God’s heart.
There is a Purpose. There is a Promise. There is Hope.