How to Spend Time Alone with God is a blog post by contributing author, Claire Wiggins.
Reading God’s word is an irreplaceable part of your day. Time carved out for Bible reading is so much more than just straight reading, however.
Perhaps you’ve heard of what many people call a “quiet time”. It’s a bit of a funny term and almost sounds like a type of punishment for a child! Thankfully, a quiet time with God is nothing like that. It is a treat – a sweet haven from the world where we can pause and converse with our Father. We get to just be with him. There is no formula. But if you’ve never intentionally spent time with God regularly (or it’s been quite a while), how do you get started? I’d like to offer a few simple ideas.
Pick a time.
This may be the most difficult hurdle to jump in fighting for your alone time with God – just showing up. Pick an hour or a half hour (or even 10 minutes) of the day to be with him, and then guard it with your life. This is going to be different for everyone, but I will tell you a tried and true method that Jesus models for us (Mark 1:35) – get up earlier than everyone else and peace and quiet with God is guaranteed.
Start with a song.
If you’re going with the morning quiet time route, you may need some help waking up. A great way to do that is with a good worship song. Today, we literally have thousands of songs at our fingertips. I tend to get on “song kicks” and listen to the same two or three for a few weeks. More than just waking me up, listening and even singing prepares my heart to be with God. I start with adoration of God, not with me and my needs.
Open the word (and maybe an app).
It’s mealtime. Pick a Bible plan and feast on Scripture. There are tons of plans online. Or, make your own! Choose a book of the Bible and read it at your own pace. Then choose another book. Don’t pressure yourself to begin in Genesis and work your way to Revelation. Any book, passage, or plan is going to edify you. You don’t have to understand everything right away. Just read. If reading is tough for you, an audio version of the Bible is an incredible resource. I listen and read at the same time most mornings.
Journal your thoughts and prayers.
As you read the word prayerfully, jot down some ideas in a notebook or journal. Write down verses that stick out to you. Make comments about a person or story. Wrestle with questions you have. Journaling is advantageous for several reasons. It will keep you focused, for one thing. It’s not as easy to think about what you’re going to eat for lunch or the calls you need to make when your hand is moving. Also, looking back through your journals can be an incredible gift – reflecting on seasons of your life, remembering what God has done, seeing growth and answered prayers.
Alone time with God is about just that – relating to God. You can study the Bible backwards and forwards and still have no relationship with him. Throughout your quiet time, and particularly towards the end, talk to God. Praise him, confess to him, thank him, ask him. If you are in Christ, trusting in his bloodshed and not your good works for salvation, then “with confidence draw near to the throne of grace” (Hebrews 4:16). His desire is to draw near to you, too.
How to Spend Time Alone with God is by Claire Wiggins.
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