Every relationship needs time together to grow and deepen. A Christian’s relationship with God is no different. We need to spend time with God to know Him better, to hear His heart, and to foster intimacy with our Savior.
The term “quiet time” is commonly used of this relationship-building time that Christians spend one-on-one with God in prayer, Bible reading, and Bible study. Jesus set the example for us. He regularly got away alone to spend time with His Heavenly Father. Most of us want – even long – to foster this relationship, but sometimes we aren’t sure how to make it happen.
Today’s busy lifestyle makes regular time with God challenging, but it can be done with planning and commitment. See “8 Tips for Moving Quiet Time from ‘Want To’ to ‘Get To'” for help in making quiet time a reality.
So, once you’ve decided to spend time with God regularly, what’s next? What does a quiet time look like? How can we get the most out of the time we do have to spend with God? The following tips can be utilized no matter how much time you have. Or simply use just those tips you find helpful.
11 Tips for Spending Regular Quality Time with God
Establish a regular place and time – We are creatures of habit. If we know when and where we will meet with God daily we are much more likely to do it. Build it into your daily schedule. If this is new for you, start small, commit to it and God will grow it.
- Organize your “tool” box – Gather your tools (Bible, reading plan, journal, pen, etc.) and keep them together in your designated spot so you’ll always be prepared. I’ve found having a reading plan greatly increases the chance of me staying in the Word regularly. Without a plan, reading stays haphazard at best. Here are several different plans that would take you through the year.
- Minimize Distractions – Though it’s not possible to eliminate them all, we can take steps to help maintain our focus. Email and social media are my biggest distractions. I had to determine not to open my laptop until after my quiet time. What competes for your attention the most?
- Start with prayer – Ask God to speak to you and help you understand His Word today. Thank Him for meeting with you.
- Begin to read the Bible – Remember your purpose is to communicate with God. The Bible is the primary way God speaks to us. Don’t read hastily just to get through the passage. Let God stop you.
- Meditate on the passage – Meditation is not emptying your mind. It is deep thinking on spiritual truths. As you read, linger over verses that impact you. Ask God questions and “listen” for His answers. These 5 PROBE questions are a great guide to meditate on a passage.
- Pray as you read – Time with God should be interactive. Respond to God as He speaks to you through His Word. Reading and praying creates a conversation with God.
- Sit still in God’s presence – We are products of our rushed, busy culture. Unfortunately, this tendency affects our time with God. We often rush through so we can get on with the next thing. I am certainly guilty of this. Commit to purposefully slow down! Sense God’s presence? Then simply sit still and be with Him.
- Journal – Read with pen in hand. Record what God says to you and how you will respond. Writing can help you stay focused on God and His voice. You can also read your thoughts later to be reminded of something God taught you, an answered prayer, a time you felt His presence, etc. Here are some extra tips on journaling by Rachel Wojo.
- Memorize – Commit to memorize verses God calls special attention to. Knowing Scripture by heart helps us guard against sin, reminds us of God’s promises, provides guidance, and allows us to meditate on God’s Word anywhere and anytime. These two posts will help: Scripture Memory Tips and 8 Activities to Help You Memorize Scripture.
- Application – Apply to your life whatever God says to you through prayer and His Word. It may be repentance. It may be a change in behavior. It may be a specific action.
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