A friend asked me the other day if there was a certain devotion book that I recommended – she’s a mom of two little boys like I am – and she remarked that the ones she has recently tried are either way too basic or way too intense.
She’s a godly girl with a good-thinking mind and she has lived some real life… and now she’s living the life of a wife, homemaker, and mom of two young (infant and toddler) sons.
And I know exactly what she’s talking about – nobody needs trite (there’s no time for that). At the same time, nobody needs tedious and too-much (there’s no time for that either).
So I really thought through her question and wanted to answer honestly – she asked if there was a devotion book I recommended – which means she wants to know if there is one I have used, or currently use, that I like and would share with a friend.
Truly, through this season – first trimester pregnancy, sick with life and living with two littles, and then through the summer-travel season – my quiet time has looked nothing like it did at the beginning of 2016. My time at the beginning of this year was rich with bible study, reading scripture, reading rich discipleship and theological books, not to mention all of the time spent readying for our church’s mom’s retreat, for which I was the speaker.
Once I entered into the first trimester of pregnancy, my quiet time consisted of reading “The Daily Light.” This takes about five minutes and can be done on an iPhone app, laying in bed. Or, sometimes I would read it out loud to the boys at the breakfast table, after choking down my daily scrambled eggs.
When we traveled this summer, it looked about the same, maybe some more scripture from wherever the Lord showed me, and it also looked like intentionally engaging the Lord during the worship sets when Tyler played.
I have a friend who talks about enjoying the rich seasons and stewarding them for the times in your life where you will need to draw from the reservoir, and goodness, if parenting littles all day long isn’t that time, I don’t know what is. The well is necessary. And so is the bucket. So is the cup. The Living Water is what we are after, well-full, bucket-full, cup-full.
We are after a satisfying drink of the Living Water.
I need Him. I need The Word. The Living Water. I need to engage in prayer with Him. I need to drink daily.
What does this look like for me right now?,… in this season – this season that I am home, that summer is slowing, that I am in the full-swing of the second trimester of pregnancy, that I am preparing for autumn…
Right now I like to take time in the morning to read one psalm (usually the one that corresponds with the date on the calendar), to read one or two pages/chapters in “Keep a Quiet Heart” By Elisabeth Elliot, and to journal whatever the Lord speaks to me, whatever my response, or prayer. Sometimes that’s one sentence. Sometimes it’s several paragraphs.
Yesterday morning, He gave me this time before the boys woke up. Today, it was after breakfast. I let them go play in the other room; I stayed at the table, and when they would come in, I would request that they ‘give mommy her quiet time with Jesus.” Tomorrow I do not know how the Lord will set the table, draw the water, give me time with Him. I look forward to seeing how He will!
I have a couple of books that I am reading through right now; my goal each day is to read chapter from each book. The books vary – one is on marriage, one is on raising children, one is just for fun, and the last book is from the library, super-practical, and a simple read. If I don’t “meet my goal” – no big deal. Providence didn’t have that as part of my day.
For all of life, including your quiet time, the key is to be in constant close communion with the Lord.
I think of quiet time like breakfast with a friend. You’ve gotta eat breakfast. Some mornings it’s bacon and eggs and pancakes and fruit and hot coffee and donuts all on a clean white table cloth. Other mornings it’s eggs and toast. Some mornings it’s a Clif bar. But it’s breakfast and you eat it and it’s sustenance. Eat your breakfast. Spend time with the Lord.Whatever meal He sets for you, enjoy it. Don’t worry if it’s not what you expected, or think it should be. Eat with Him.