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Quiet Time with God: 8 Ways to Keep Your Devotions Vibrant (Plus Give-away)

by Jocelyn on January 6, 2014

Grace Fox 2014by Grace Fox
www.gracefox.com

Every morning before my household wakes, I tiptoe downstairs, pour a cup of coffee, and settle into my leather loveseat for quiet time with God. Bible and journal in hand, I spend an hour delving into the Scriptures where—without fail—I discover nuggets of life-­‐changing truth.

I regard this “sacred habit” not as a duty, but as a delight. It’s a discipline I guard selfishly. The benefits of maintaining it far outweigh the effort.

Spending time with God in this way helps me get to know Him better. I learn more about His thoughts regarding marriage, purity, communication skills, priorities, money, and other matters relevant to my every day life. I learn to view life and people through His eyes, and my perspective matures as I allow His thoughts pervade mine.

For instance, if unforeseen circumstances complicate my schedule, I’m now able to rest in knowing that God is in control rather than fussing and fuming about the unexpected changes. If someone behaves unkindly toward me, I resist the urge to do likewise and, instead, pray that God will meet that person at her deepest point of need. I now understand His compassion for the poor, the widow, and the orphan, and I share His desire to, in as much as is possible, live at peace with all men.

Spending time with God and thereby becoming more and more familiar with His promises also changes the way I view myself. The knowledge of His forgiveness and restoration washes away discouragement due to failure. His guarantee to equip me to do His work calms my fears of inadequacy. His assurance of divine strength carries me when I feel weak.

Establishing a daily quiet time with God transforms me, and it will do the same for all who pursue this discipline of delight. Here are a few suggestions to get started and to keep your time with Him vibrant:

  • Decide what time of day works best for you. Early morning suits me now, but that wasn’t always the case. When my kids were toddlers, I snatched a few minutes when they napped. Some women use their lunch breaks. Some prefer to spend a few minutes with God at bedtime. Circumstances and life seasons change, so be flexible.
  • Create your own “sacred space.” Find a place that’s welcoming and make it your own. Ensure good lighting. Keep a basket nearby to hold your Bible, journal, and study resources so you don’t waste time hunting for these things.
  • Choose a Bible version that’s easy to understand. I’ve used the New International Version and New American Standard Version in the past. Currently I use the New Living Translation. You might prefer a different version. That’s okay—each to his own.
  • Set realistic goals. I read only one or two verses per day when my kids were young and my time with God was limited. Now I read through the Bible in a year using the New Living Translation’s One Year Bible. It’s better to do what works than to set unrealistic goals and then quit because they’re unattainable.
  • Keep a journal. Some people write their insights in great depth. Others write only a single thought or a short prayer. Do what suits your nature knowing that journaling serves a dual purpose: Writing the insights you glean helps you process and remember them, and it enables you to see how you’ve grown spiritually over time.
  • Add variety. Over the years, I’ve supplemented (not replaced) my Bible reading with a good devotional book or a women’s Bible study. Occasionally I’ll play quiet worship music, close my eyes, and meditate on the lyrics. Sometimes I read the Psalms aloud to the Lord. Often I read the Word and then go for a walk, praying aloud as I go.
  • Regard it as a special time to build your friendship with God. Several years ago, I thought I’d multi-­‐task by using my quiet time to prepare a women’s Sunday school class I taught. I soon realized that I was cheating myself and God. As author Bruce Wilkinson writes, I’d become an expert at serving God and a novice at being His friend. Ouch! Ensure that your goal is to become an expert at being His friend.
  • Ask God to speak to you. When we meet with a good friend, we enjoy a two-­‐way conversation. The same is true when we spend time with God. He invites us to tell Him our needs and concerns, but He desires to communicate His heart with us, too. So, go ahead— share your thoughts with Him but be still and listen for His voice, too. Write down what He says.
  • Avoid compartmentalizing your quiet time with God. What new insights did you learn about God’s character? What instructions did He give? What promises did He offer? Now take these thoughts gleaned in your “sacred space” and apply them as you go throughout your day. That’s when change truly occurs.

My prayer for you is that your quiet time with God will be a duty of sheer delight. “My heart has heard you say, ‘Come and talk with me.’ And my heart responds, ‘LORD, I am coming’” (Psalm 27:8).

Grace Fox - Morning Moments with GodThe Give-Away

Grace is generously giving one copy of her latest release, Morning Moments with God: Devotions for the Busy Woman, to a lucky Faith Deployed blog follower! To enter the drawing, simply leave a comment. A winner will be selected using random.org this Friday, January 10.

About the Author:
Grace Fox is a missionary, an international speaker at women’s events, and the author of seven books. Her newest release, Morning Moments with God: Devotions for the Busy Woman (Harvest House) is filled with more than 150 snippets of spiritual encouragements designed to draw readers into a more intimate walk with God. Purchase the book here:

Book Grace for your next retreat or conference: www.gracefox.com or 604-­‐755-­‐8285.

© Grace Fox 2014

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Beth January 6, 2014 at 8:25 am

Thank you for all your wonderful suggestions, Grace. This year my goal is to read through the Bible and to truly develop that daily time with Him so this came with perfect timing. Your book sounds wonderful!
Many blessings,
Beth

Reply

Grace Fox January 18, 2014 at 3:43 pm

Hi Beth. Sorry for the delayed response–I was out of town for two weeks with a laptop that would not hook up to wireless. Anyway, I’m cheering you on as you seek to establish a regular quiet time. I read through the Bible in a year using the NLT translation designed for that purpose. It’s wonderful! Blessings to you — Grace

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Judy Cook January 6, 2014 at 9:49 am

Thank you for your insight…..I’m going to print this out as a reminder. We live in a small home so it’s hard to find a place just for devotions and prayer. But I do like to get up earlier than anyone else to have quiet time.

Reply

Grace Fox January 18, 2014 at 3:45 pm

Hi Judy:
I don’t know what season of life you’re in, but perhaps you could incorporate your prayer time into a walk? Make prayer as natural as breathing, talking to God throughout your day, even in the mundane.

Blessings to you,
Grace

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Stephanie Wallace January 6, 2014 at 10:41 am

This devotional would be so wonderful to help me establish a daily quiet time with God.

In Christ,
Stephanie

Reply

Grace Fox January 18, 2014 at 3:48 pm

Hi Stephanie:
I pray that you’ll delight in your daily time with the Lord. He delights in you :)

Warmly,
Grace

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Jessica Andrews January 6, 2014 at 1:07 pm

This devotional sounds wonderful. I always love to try a new way to look at the Bible.

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Grace Fox January 18, 2014 at 3:50 pm

Hi Jessica:
This devotional’s written in short snippets — like a sip of cool water for spiritually thirsty souls. The key thing, though, is the Take Action step at the end of each reading to help us apply the truth learned.

Blessings to you,
Grace

Reply

Linda P. January 6, 2014 at 1:24 pm

I LOVE how God works. I am giving a small speech on Wednesday on this very topic!! It always amazes me how God will bring such things to focus in many different ways!!

Blessings!!

Reply

Grace Fox January 18, 2014 at 3:50 pm

The Lord weaves things together in such lovely way. How did your speech go?

Blessings,
Grace

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Monica Kemmerer January 6, 2014 at 2:33 pm

Thank you so much for the suggestions! This year, I’ve been striving really hard to dig deeper into God’s word and learn more about who He is! I want to get more out of my devotions, rather than just rushing through them and then getting on with my day. I am very excited, and these suggestions – and this blog – have encouraged me!

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Grace Fox January 18, 2014 at 3:52 pm

I’m so glad this blog encouraged you, Monica. Know that the Lord wants intimacy with you more than you can imagine! He delights in you.

Warmly,
Grace

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Angela Walker January 7, 2014 at 5:36 pm

Very helpful! I am newly married and have been trying to find ways to incorporate my devotional time into my new schedule. This helps a lot! Thank you!

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Grace Fox January 18, 2014 at 3:54 pm

Hi Angela:

Congratulations on your recent marriage. I’m so glad this blog helped. Blessings on you as you seek to make the Lord your priority.

Warmly,
Grace

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Beth Barter January 7, 2014 at 9:51 pm

I’ve started getting up early to read my bible and pray. It encourages me throughout the day.

Reply

Grace Fox January 18, 2014 at 4:07 pm

Hi Beth:
I find that starting my morning with the Lord sets the tone for my whole day. Getting up early to do it is sooo worth it.

Warmly,
Grace

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Delia Gomez January 8, 2014 at 12:18 am

I cherish the early morning time with the Lord. However lately I have not regard the time spendt with the Lord with respect as my guest and best friend. Thank you so much for the reminder of how important it is to listen with upmost attention.

Reply

Grace Fox January 18, 2014 at 4:09 pm

Hi Delia:
I find that my quiet time is enhanced when I regard it as a time when Jesus, my best friend, wants and deserves my undivided attention. Otherwise it becomes a chore or a duty and the joy disappears.

Blessings on you as you pursue knowing Jesus,
Grace

Reply

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