BY RAPHAEL MNKANDHLA
One word that describes Christianity is “relationship.” Like any other relationship this is a love relationship that grows when prioritized and intentionally invested in. From the first day one commits to be a disciple of Christ there is a cry in their heart to know Christ more and to acquaint themselves with our Great Savior. In my interactions with people I have concluded that most Christians love Jesus but don’t intentionally invest in the relationship, therefore they live substandard Christian lives by not knowing the riches that are in Christ. It should is also be clearly noted that the devil might not be successful in taking you to hell with him, but he will try and make life on earth so busy that you are robbed of looking into the great inheritance we have in Jesus.
Last time we looked at reading the bible. Here we look at practical ways that can aid in your time with God.
- SET A TIME: The same time every day is the best way to establish a lasting habit. Try and not give God left over’s or try to find time, but evidence him as a priority in your life by making time. Mornings are the best for me as they were for great men like David. In Psalm 5:3 he says “Every morning you’ll hear me at it again. Every morning I lay out the pieces of my life on your altar and watch for fire to descend.”(MSG) When will you devote time to your relationship with Jesus every day?
- SET A PLACE: The same place each day is also instrumental in establishing a disciplined time with God. Jesus called this place a closet. (Matt 6:6) This is a place where you can be in isolation. A place you can shut the door on the world and open the windows of heaven. In countless passages we see Jesus going to be alone. Where will you meet alone with the Lord?
- AVOID DISTRACTIONS: We live in a time where we are constantly occupied and downtime looks like a waste of time. Even in times of prayer I have found myself getting distracted by my phone, a tweet, or Facebook post and before you know it my time is gone. I log out of heaven and log into what is trending on earth. The key is deciding what you will do before you even go into a time with God. What are the things that could distract you from following through with your desire to focus only on God? TV? Social media? Music? Visitors? Phone calls? The refrigerator? Whatever it is, how will you avoid this distraction?
- SET REASONABLE GOALS: The greatest discouragement to time with the Lord is unreasonable goals. I used to discredit or disqualify 5 minutes of quality time with God simply because it wasn’t an hour as I had expected. You may know someone who spends an hour a day with the Lord, or another who reads through the Bible completely in a year. But these goals may not be reasonable for you to start out with. Perhaps at a later time these would be good goals for you! Be realistic! What can you pretty much guarantee you would do each day? Seek to do it consistently. Maybe 20 minutes of Bible reading and prayer, maybe 30 minutes? What can and will work for you?
- BE PRESENT: Be awake and alert. Let it be a time where you can think clearly. Be mentally aware that God is present with you. Don’t let feelings be what drives the time, but doing the right thing. Be morally pure and clean. Scores of people don’t have a quiet time because of uncomfortably looking God in the face with sin in their lives. Realize that repentance is a gift from God. What do you need to clear out of the way to talk to God?
- HAVE SOMEONE KEEP YOU ACCOUNTABLE: It is always helpful to have another Christian know your goal and be praying for you that you will reach it. Preferably let it be someone who has mastered this or a friend who is partnering up with you in the same commitment. They could even call you daily or intermittently for a while to ask you if you spent time with Christ. Who can you ask for help?
- HAVE THE RIGHT TOOLS FOR THE JOB: I can’t tell you of how many times I have had to get up and look for a notebook or pen, which ends up taking from my time with God. Here are some great tools: a bible, a prayer journal (to write what God is saying to you), a notepad and a pen.
- DIVE IN
- Read- read from God’s Word and meditate on the scriptures.
- Write– what God says to you and what He tells you to do. Remember you are writing for yourself, don’t write to impress.
- Pray- God wants to hear from you, not some rehearsed prayer. Speak honestly with God. Tell Him how you feel. Pray out loud. It keeps your mind on track and enables you to stay focused. (I will look more on this subject on my next post.
- Tell– When you share what God is saying, it’s a way to drive the truth deeper into your life. Christians who do not share what God is daily teaching them are called constipated Christians. This is where sharing on Social media is applicable.
- Obey- Seek to instantly obey what God has said. Don’t second-guess God. Your spiritual train is running on two rails. One is revelation and the other is obedience. And if one rail stops, your train stops. Learn to practice instant obedience.
There you go! My prayer is that the cross will continue to be a demonstration of God’s love for you, that you never stop desiring to gaze upon our glorious King and you seek to know him more.Fix your eyes on Jesus and all this will spring more from love than duty.
To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!”- Rev 5:13
What are some ways that are helping you maintain a consistent time with God ?