I used to interpret the phrase “to be still” as just resting in God’s presence, but you can take it a step further to include waiting to hear God’s voice- including Him in your day before it officially begins. We often hear that we should begin our days with the Lord… But then the children are up, we over-sleep, are too tired, too many things to do, and God gets pushed aside. When was the last time you began your day with saying, “Good morning, God.”? After all, He created the day before you even experienced it. We should be thankful to Him for the day, and all that He has in store for us. It’s a new day… it’s exciting and filled with possibilities.
What Are The Real Reasons For Not Spending Time With Him?
- We Forget. It’s easy to get caught up in the busyness of the beginning of the day- especially when the children are asking endless questions, someone has “forgotten” to do something and it becomes your problem (kids and homework, permission slips, money), or your spouse needs you to do something for them. These serve as distractions taking you away from spending time in the Word and with God. It is the one way that Satan can keep you off focus. By the time you realize that you forgot to do your devotionals or spend time with God, it’s too late.
- We Oversleep/Are Too Tired. A stressful lifestyle and late nights can cause us to oversleep or be too tired. Other times, hitting the snooze button one more time becomes habit- we’re not tired, but we don’t feel like getting up either. This is another way we put God on the back burner- we tell ourselves we are too tired, or it’s too early to spend time with God.
- Too Many Distractions. We make an attempt to spend time with God. We have our own space, our Bible ready, a drink, soft music playing… and then the children wake up (early), your spouse interrupts your time with God, an appliance isn’t working properly, or some type of distraction arises that consumes your time. Satan will always try to distract you, and will use anything that he can to take you away from spending time with the Lord.
- Get Tired/Can’t Focus. This is common when we seek to spend time with Him. We try to read our Bibles, we try to focus on His Word, but suddenly find ourselves getting sleepy, and some of us even fall asleep. So how do you spend time with God when you can’t even seem to stay up?
- Are Frustrated/Aren’t Hearing From Him. Frustration, anger, bitterness, and anything that blocks us from hearing from God becomes an irritant. The bottom line truly is that the heart has become hardened, and it can be for any reason. When this happens, we allow frustration and anger to take root, and we purposely choose to move away from God.
- Procrastination. “I’ll do it tomorrow- tomorrow is a better day.” And yet tomorrow never comes! Here’s a thought: Why put off to tomorrow what you can accomplish today?
Why Should We Begin Our Day With Him?
We should seek to begin our day with Him because God should be placed first in our lives above everything else. Additionally, what better way to start your day than in scripture? It is through God’s Word that we receive revelation and often hear His voice concerning our lives. God can take this time in prayer to guide us through our day. It’s a time of quiet reflection and meditation wherein we can surrender to God. God will often use these times to give us solutions to issues that we may be facing, saving us time and sometimes money. It is when we invite God in that we see the greatest miracles, revelations, and progress take place. It’s all by placing Him first.
Spending time with Him is reading scripture, meditating on its meaning, and to be still (wait on God). To be still involves us being silent and waiting for God to speak. It’s tough, and unnatural, but if the world can do meditation exercises, then Christians can be still.
Additionally, a wonderful thing to do is to pray scripture over your day, and to pray over your day. You can’t do that at night! 🙂
How Can We Ensure That We Begin Our Day With Him?
- Start by beginning your day a half hour earlier. Your body may rebel against you, and your head may tell you that it’s too early, but these thoughts need to be overcome. Even if you get up grudgingly, God will still honour your willingness to spend time with Him. Eventually, you will delight in spending time in the Word, and it will become habit. Also, by backing up your day, you can eliminate household distractions, and can concentrate on the Word while everything in the house it peaceful.
- Create a prayer closet. Many families don’t have an extra room that they can dedicate to prayer, and sometimes the living room can be full of distractions as people are getting up. A prayer closet- especially in the bedroom- can be handy as not many people will go in there, and it’s usually quiet.
- If nothing seems to work, inform your family that between a certain time, you need quiet and not to interrupt. This can also be an ideal time to do family devotionals wherein you begin with a scripture, and everyone breaks out into their own room for silent meditation. It’s a great way to teach your kids the same principle of spending time with God- and getting quiet time yourself!
- If the snooze button is a problem, get your clock ahead, or your alarm behind. Most people who hit the snooze button do so a certain number of times. Trick your brain into getting up early!
- If you are too tired, you can try going to bed earlier. Sleepiness may also indicate a lifestyle that is too stressful, or has too much activity. For your own health, it is worth analyzing what can be eliminated or cut back on. Your family will be grateful for a healthier you!
- If you are angry, frustrated, stressed in life or with God, then you need to ask Him to soften your heart. Turn back to Him as He will help you deal with things and will enable you to move on. Then you will begin to hear from Him again. Also, sometimes a good Christian counsellor can help as well.
- If you are tired, or can’t focus when reading the Word, some people have tried reading standing up, reading using a brighter light, doing jumping jacks… anything that keeps them alert. It’s easy to relax and be peaceful in the presence of the Lord, but Satan can use this to prevent you from hearing His Word, too.
- For procrastination: Today is your tomorrow. You just need to begin… now.
These are just a few tips on making God the priority in your day. The key to having a successful relationship with God is spending time with Him, being in the Word, and to be still so that we can hear His voice. He will guide us in all things, if we would only put Him first, and be still. Additionally, being still offers us the greatest peace because we are resting in Him, and are enveloped in knowing that He is God.
Learn how to be still!
If you have any further suggestions that may help other readers, feel free to comment! It may bless someone else!