You may be asking yourself “CAN I DO THIS??”
I won’t tell you this will be the easiest thing you will ever do. In our fast paced lives, it is often a challenge to block time off to be with the Lord without distractions. I know some have children, some have very demanding jobs, some are caregivers, some have severe health issues, some travel a lot, and some have all of this and more. Let’s face it, life today is a challenge. We live in a society that expects and often demands us to move at a “microwave pace”, yet with some things there is no substitute for time. And, yes… giving time ….takes time.
This is not about religion, or rules, or who has been reading the Bible the longest or shortest. It is very SIMPLY about growing PERSONALLY closer to the LORD. It is also NOT about condemnation of anyone or anything. It is about love and relationship with Jesus Christ. I am sure you have someone special in your life that you can’t wait to see and speak to each day…. each moment of the day. And our LORD is NO different. He WANTS to spend time with us, share with us, show us HIS way, help us, and yes speak to us often through HIS still small voice that can resonate loudly within our very being. HOW do we grow closer to the LORD? We grow closer to HIM by reading HIS WORD, which increases our faith, our knowledge of who HE is, and CHOOSING HIM over any other potential distraction.
ASK YOURSELF this question: “Am I willing to miss something AWESOME that God wants to share with ME this year and the blessings that come with it?” It is NO accident you are reading this blog. It is NO accident you are craving HOW to do it. God has something special in store for you.
If you can block out 25 minutes in your schedule each day to be with the Lord, then you WILL be able to do this. Maybe it will mean getting up a little earlier, going to bed a little later, taking lunch in your car or in a private spot so you can eat lunch with the Lord, or whatever you come up with. Whatever you choose to do will require commitment on your part.
What happens if you miss a day, or two??? You pick up and keep going. NONE of us are perfect. NONE of us have it all together. We all will miss our designated time some days. Just come back to HIM. Whatever happens, where ever you are, simply pick up the computer/ipad/iphone and Bible if it is not in one of those sources and KEEP ON KEEPING ON. Our God understands more than we ever will. However, having said all of this I encourage you to do your best. If your time with the Lord is 4AM, great!! If your time is midnight, great!! If your time is anytime in the 24 hours of a day, great!! This is not a contest. This is a journey of love so each of us may grow closer to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. He has so much He wants to tell us and the ONLY way we can hear HIM is through HIS Word.
Here are a few tips, Trish, my 2012 teacher, gave us to get us through the 365 days (and I’ve added a few of my own):
- Have a Bible and a schedule ready and in a good place to do this.
- MAKE UP YOUR MIND NOW that this is important to you, put it on your calendar, in your ipod or ipad and CHOOSE to make it part of your life. We will talk more about choices when we get to Deuteronomy :-).
- More importantly, buy a little inexpensive Bible and keep it in your car or purse. You will find that waiting in the car, sitting in the Dr’s waiting room, sports practices, pick up lines, kids running late will actually be carved out times to read! You will learn to love the times that usually annoy us as a waste to be our MOST productive this year.
- LISTEN to an Audio Bible! If you are sick, folding laundry, cleaning, doing your hair, cooking, or driving …. listen to the reading possibly on Bible Gateway or YouVersion rather than read them. It is the Word of God anyway we take it in!
- It is ok to read ahead. If God prompts you to keep moving…keep moving OR even better ….. dig deeper, ask a mentor, speak to your pastor, God will lead you .
- Also, humble yourself to ASK the obvious, the challenging, or things you may not understand. Do we think so much of ourselves that we can’t say “What is that? Why? Who?” Be prepared to learn things you thought you knew.
- Remember we have a God who loves us SO deeply that HE desires we spend time with HIM, and not just our time in church on Sunday mornings. This is not about what others think of us, nor about what others are doing. It is PERSONAL. It is all about the relationship between YOU and JESUS and growing that relationship to a different, deeper, more dedicated part of our lives. Believe me… you will forever be changed.
Be prepared for God to open your eyes, your heart, your mind, your body .. ALL of you, in ways you could never imagine or dream. GET READY!!!! EXPECT something awesome.