May the words of my mouth
and the meditation of my heart
be pleasing in your sight, LORD
my Rock and my Redeemer.
We live in an instant world with instant information, instant meals, instant coffee. We often expect instant results in whatever we do. Modern technology has allowed us to connect with others far away, and gain information quickly. Some people even develop instant friendships on social media. In this fast pace life, many have developed the mindset of an instant prayer life, and bible reading /study.
I believe that God values the time we spend with Him, but the desire of His heart is that we put Him first in all we do. It doesn’t matter if we spend ten minutes or three hours with Him in prayer or study, its all about the posture of our heart. “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” Matthew 22:37 (NIV)
Jesus and His disciples came to a village where a woman named Martha welcomed them into her home. Her sister, Mary sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught. But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to help me!” But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:38-42 (NLT)
In this fast pace world, it’s easy to get distracted and lose focus. Our focus must not be on man or things, but on God. If we put Him first in our life, the other things will fall into place. It’s not about the quantity of time we spend with the Lord but rather the quality. Have you ever had lunch with someone who wasn’t really present? In all appearance they are there physically but their mind and heart are somewhere else. Perhaps they were texting or answering phone calls during your lunch, in the time that you had set aside special to meet with them. How does it make you feel? Is that how it is when you meet with God to pray and read His word? Are you in His presence with all your heart soul and mind? Or are you just appearing to make an effort, but your heart and mind is somewhere else?
“His grace is sufficient for you, for His power is made perfect in our weaknesses.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)
“Those who wait on the Lord will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.” Isaiah 40:31 (NAS)
Spending quality time with God does not ensure that you will not have problems. But you can have peace in the midst of the storms that come in your life.
“For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.”
Matthew 5:45 (ESV)
“I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 (NLT)
Although God can change things in an instant, His desire to meet you in the quiet place of His love is everlasting.
I encourage you to make special time to meet with Him daily and allow Him to speak to you through His word (the bible).
It will change your life.
One of the most frequent questions I have been asked through the years is:
How do you hear and know God’s Voice?
As a child I learned to recognize the voice of my parents, siblings and friends. Still today when I hear their voice
I recognize them, because I have spent time with them, their voice has become familiar to me.
Samuel served God yet did not know God
Although Samuel was just a boy he served the Lord, and he grew up in the presence of the Lord. 1 Samuel 2:18 -21
Samuel did not know the Lord, because he had not yet had a message from the Lord. 1Samuel 3:7
But God called to Samuel three times one night before Eli or Samuel realized it was God calling and Eli instructed Samuel to answer Gods call to him by saying “Yes, Lord Speak your servant is listening. 1 Samuel 3:2-14
The more time I spend with God. Just me and him in the quiet place. The more familiar his voice becomes to me. He says My sheep know my voice and they hear me when I call. John 10:27
He speaks in the quiet hours. He speaks in a still small voice that only those who are listening can hear. He speaks in a song, an action, or a kind word from a stranger. He speaks through his love letter to you which is the Holy Bible.
As Elijah stood on the mountain the Lord passed by, and a mighty windstorm hit the mountain. It was such a terrible blast that the rocks were torn loose, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake. And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper. When Elijah heard it he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. 1Kings 19:12
However he speaks, it is always kind and loving. He never goes against his word (the Bible).
Sometimes to explain in a simpler way how to know if its God or not speaking to you
I tell people to pay attention to the voice: Is the voice saying:
I am not good enough. That’s you
You are not good enough. That’s principalities of darkness
You are fearfully and wonderfully made. That’s God
He loves you so much and he would never tell you anything that does not line up with his word.
I encourage you to spend time alone in a quiet place with him. As that place becomes more and more familiar to you, his presence and his voice will become familiar to you as well.
But remember spending time alone with God is not about you doing all the talking. Or doing anything for that matter for he tells us Be still and know that He is God. Psalm 46:10
Many times I have gone into my prayers room (my secret place with God), with my own agenda. Telling God my plans, my needs and expecting him to come on board, because I use scripture to justify my action. But I have found through the years of ritual - all the while as a good thing because I am spending time with God. I have failed to go to him asking him what his agenda for me and my life holds. I am reminded of Psalm 46:10 "Be still and know that I am God." Quiet your mind, soul and body. Just wait on him, allow him to speak. For your time alone with God should not only be about you and your needs. It should be a two way relationship. Sit back, Listen and Wait. Allow him to speak to you in the quiet place. "For only in him do we live and move and have your being." Acts 17:28
Prayer is the key to heaven but faith unlocks the door (song by Don Gibson)
The phrase of this song is true, But we must remember that our faith must not be in the words that we speak but in the one who can bring it to pass.
Jesus didn’t teach his disciples to preach. He taught them to pray. Because he knew if they could pray they would be able to preach, teach, prophecy and heal in the name of the father. He knew if they could pray the rest would come. They could do whatever he called them to do.
Jesus was in a certain place praying. As he finished one of his disciples came to him and said,
“Lord teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples to pray. Jesus said, this is how you pray.”
Our Father who art in heaven, Hallowed be your name.
We are to Praise him! For his name is holy!
Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
His kingdom is in heaven, His will is his word the Bible, Give him the situation
His will be done. Not ours. He doesn’t need us to dictate how he should handle things
Give us this day our daily bread
Ask him to supply your needs
Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us
Ask him to forgive you as you forgive others this means unless we forgive we will not be forgiven
But if you do not forgive others, your heavenly father will not forgive you. Matt. 6:14-15, Mark 11:26
Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil
Ask him to help you overcome temptation and do what is right in his sight.
For yours is all the glory, honor and power.
Always remember who he is and Praise him that he even hears you and listens to your prayer!
Be still and know that he is God. Psalms 46:10
If I have a friend and every time I am with that friend, I do all the talking and never let my friend talk to me. What kind of a friendship is it? It is the same with God. Many times we go into our prayer time, and we forget to listen. Being still does not mean you are simply sitting still. It means your spirit and your mind is still. So you can listen for his voice. Sometimes it is in a whisper, sometimes it is in a scripture, sometimes it is simply in the peace that he gives. But whatever you hear him saying to you will always line up with his word the Bible which is his love letter to you.
It is not about the amount of time you spend with him. It is about the quality of that time.
Many years ago when God spoke this to me, I began to take the time I had with him and divide it into fourths. If I had 20 minutes to spend with God I would spend 5 minutes praising him. 5 minutes reading his word, 5 minutes praying to him and then 5 minutes listening to him. Giving him a chance to speak.
I may not always hear his voice but I will always feel his presence.
For he says: If you draw near to me, I will draw near to you James 4:8