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Call Me Crazy

July 22, 2010

My friend Emily loves the Lord and loves to share His love through teaching and counseling others. Today, she shares thoughts about her quiet time with you. Dr. Emily Edwards is the author of Ready and Waiting: A Biblical Approach to Singleness, Dating, and Preparation for Marriage. The book and its companion workbook are powerful resources for helping singles put on their “biblical glasses” to find the one God has prepared for just for them. More information on Dr. Edwards and her books can be found at Living Hope Publishing. Dr. Edwards is currently working on a book on helping believers through the difficult problems and trials of life.

“In the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.” – Psalm 5:3

When people ask me about my quiet time with God, I almost don’t want to say because they often don’t believe me. Or they get mad at me. Yes, I’m one of those crazy people who gets up and spends 40 minutes in the morning with God.

When I told her I was writing this article, I have a friend who said, “Nobody wants to hear that because it makes them feel bad. It makes them feel guilty that they aren’t doing that (or don’t want to do that), too. It sounds like you’re bragging.”

That made me think about why I spend so much time in the morning. The honest answer is, it’s because it doesn’t do me any good if I don’t.

I’ve tried spending less time. Even now, there are some mornings I wake up late and I only have 15 minutes. I spend as much time as I can in prayer. I might read a verse or two, but I feel rushed. It almost feels like a chore instead of a desire. I don’t get anything out of it. (I don’t think God gets anything out of it, either.)

That’s why I try to take at least 40 minutes. This gives me time to reflect and really meditate on God’s Word. When I’m reading Scripture, I try to think about the application. I reflect on what I read for the day and ask, “How does this apply to my life”? or, “How can I apply this to my life”? This way, it becomes real to me instead of just more words on a page.

I am also very conscious of my sins. I spend time working through areas of unforgiveness and repenting where necessary.

This is critical time for me. What I do with my time at the beginning of my day affects the rest of my day. I need that time or I struggle.

Not everyone needs their quiet time this way. Some of my friends find their quiet time with God in other ways, like while driving to work or taking a jog. That time is as productive for them as my quiet time is for me. I can’t do that because I don’t multi-task very well. I am easily distracted by things I see and hear around me.

Everyone’s quiet time is different. Everyone is wired differently and God works in their lives in different ways.

That’s why I encourage everyone to figure out what type of quiet time is most productive for them. When can you focus on God most easily? What time is He able to reach through to you? When are you most likely to let Him break through the clutter so you can hear Him? It’s worth thinking about.

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13 Comments leave one →
  1. July 22, 2010 6:11 am

    I have loved seeing how everyone’s quiet time is different, according to what they need. I am really hoping that your readers are seeing the pattern here, that God wants to meet us where we are. He doesn’t need to compare my quiet time with someone else’s quiet time. He just wants to meet with me in whatever way is most beneficial to our relationship. I am quite certain that He will take all that we will give Him!

    • July 22, 2010 7:14 am

      “God wants to meet us where we are. He doesn’t need to compare my quiet time with someone else’s quiet time.”

      LOVE that, Cherie! And so true. Thank you.

  2. Julie Sanders permalink
    July 22, 2010 7:42 am

    You know, Emily, I think your friend might be right about how hearing of someone’s passion for God can stir up strong feelings in us, but I think it might be more “conviction,” rather than “guilt.” God often uses the testimony of how others are pursuing Him to tap me on the shoulder and remind me of where I need to exercise my faith in Him. I appreciate your sharing about your prime time in the morning and for tapping us on the shoulder to rethink what our own prime time might look like.

    • July 22, 2010 10:50 am

      Julie, I so agree about the conviction! I thought the same thing but couldn’t put it into words. You did so beautifully!

    • July 25, 2010 6:49 pm

      Very true Julie. God does use others at times to tap us on the shoulder. But I do know some ladies (like the one who told me the comment in this article) who feel guilt. It just depends on the individual. But that is very insightful and helpful. Thank you for sharing.

  3. July 22, 2010 7:52 am

    Thank you Emily for sharing with us. God wants His people to “spur one another on to good works.” Your example is an encouraging “push” for many of us!

    • July 25, 2010 6:40 pm

      Thank you Kathy for giving me the opportunity to share my quiet time with the ladies. It was a blessing, and I’m encouraged by what they shared as well.

  4. July 22, 2010 10:07 am

    I agree that hearing about someone else’s quiet time can be conviction, but sometimes we carry guilt that doesn’t belong to us, too.

    I think as a church, we have this idea of what the “ideal” Christian life looks like. We get up, pray, read the Bible, attend church services, get involved in ministries, share the gospel with our neighbors over the fence, and if we’re not meeting all of these standards, we’re seen as slacking. We measure people according to this standard, and if we think they aren’t measuring up, we let them know. It’s our “Christian duty.”

    This creates a guilt among Christians that ought not be so.

    Yes, we should be stirring one another to good works, encouraging one another to pray, share the gospel, and continue to stay in the scriptures, but this looks different for each one of us. There is not “one size fits all” plan, and how we walk out our relationship with God will look different at different times in our lives.

    We also have to remember that it’s God job to do the convicting — not us! 🙂

  5. July 23, 2010 1:01 am

    Thank you so much for sharing ladies. I have learned a lot from all of you, and our discussions. I love hearing how God is working in each of your lives. Thank you for allowing me to share. May God bless all of you.

  6. July 23, 2010 4:49 pm

    Emily~
    Thanks you for sharing how your Quiet Time works for you. The verse you shared: “In the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.” – Psalm 5:3

    This just really caught me when I read it. I wrote it down to start my prayers with each morning in my quiet time.

    Thanks again.
    ~Blessings~
    Marita

    • July 25, 2010 6:42 pm

      Marita,

      I’m glad this verse was helpful to you in regard to your quiet time with God. May He continue to guide you, and direct your paths (Prov. 3:6).

  7. July 25, 2010 8:16 pm

    I wonder about comments about lack of “sufficient” quiet time (in the eyes of the listener) as a sign of spiritual immaturity or backsliding. Sometimes Christians act as if there is an objective standard for personal worship that human beings can know and by which they can judge others. While many Christians may be well-meaning in their comments, the end result may not actually be God-honoring. I attended a Spirit-filled church for many years that was led a pastor who had his best time of communication with God on the toilet!

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