If you follow me via social media you know how important I think quiet time is in our Christian walk. When I say quiet time I mean devoid of all distraction and sitting at the feet of God. Some times doing that can seem really hard and in the beginning it will be a challenge but I promise you it gets better. Here are some things that helped me to maximize my study time and to have consistent quiet time with God.
Tips for Quiet Time
1. Get A Bible: There are so many wonderful bible apps out there my favorite is the YouVersion app, however it is no substitute for a physical bible that you can thumb through. Go out and purchase a bible that would be easy for you to understand. The King James Version of the bible is wonderful but it can be very intimidating with the Thees, Thous, and Shalts. I recommend translations that are easier to read and understand like the New Living Translation (NLT), or the New International Version (NIV) study bibles. These bibles are broken down in thought for thought translations they are less formal then the King James Version bible but still very functional.
2. Learn Your Bible: Most of the time when we read books we start at the very beginning because we know it's better to read in chronological order so we don't miss critical parts of the story. Unfortunately that's not the case with the bible. The books are not arranged in a Chronological order, they are instead arranged by the purpose.
The Old Testament Contains all the books written before Jesus' birth.
- Genesis - Esther, History.
- Job - Songs of Solomon, Poetry and Wisdom.
- Isaiah - Malachi, Prophecy.
The New Testament Contains all the books written after Jesus' death.
- Matthew - Acts, History.
- Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, the Gospel (Chronicling the birth, life, death and ressurection of Jesus).
- Roman - Jude, Letters.
- Written to churches or individuals to pastor them from a far (13 of those books were written by Paul and are called Pauline Letters).
- Revelations, Prophecy.
There is also a Concordance (index) in the bible to help you search different topics. So as you can see knowing how the bible is set up is critical to how you will use it to study.
3. Invest: Like anything else quiet time takes making an investment, but it will be worth it. I recommend finding a devotional plan to follow when getting started - I loved reading Jesus Calling when I was starting out. I have also discovered that the YouVersion app has reading plans as well and they are totally free - search for something you want to learn more about ie. marriage, patience, or love. Earlier I talked about getting a bible, the more in depth ones will cost more but they are so worth it. While you are at it get some good pens for writing in your bible (yes you can write in your bible, haha!). I recommend the Sakura Pigma Micron pens, they won't smudge and the tips are small enough to allow you to write in bibles with small margins. Get in there don't be afraid to turn those pages, and to take notes. Personalize your bible - add tabs, a pretty cover, or a cute bookmark, make it your own.
4. Make Time: Now that you have your bible, a journal and pens to write with you have to make time. Most people struggle with finding the perfect time of day to have quiet time, some people struggle with making time all together. My motto however is get it in where ever you can. God will honor you for the sacrifice of any time you make and will build on it to help you. For me the hardest part about getting quiet time in was finding the perfect time of day. I have tried having quiet time at night, midday, and in the morning. I am usually too sleepy at night and too busy midday, so the morning time was just right. I was clear headed and the day's stresses hadn't crept in yet. The morning time will not work for everyone, find a time that works for you. Just like everyone has a different relationship with God your quiet time will be different too.
5. Set the Mood: It's kind of like setting the ambiance for a romantic dinner or a party - you cook a meal, light some candles, spruce yourself up and play music to get the fun started. I didn't just start out loving quiet time but setting the mood sure helps make it easier and helps me to desire time with God. For me setting the mood is beginning my day with prayer, playing some music as I spruce myself up for God, writing in my journal to God, and my meal is reading the word - if I am really a hungry bear I'll have breakfast then too. I know playing music during quiet time seems crazy but I assure you it helps, I do turn my music off when reading the word and I put phone on airplane mode to avoid distractions. Also don't set limits on your quiet time - sing, dance, and take God out on dates. If something comes up during your scheduled quiet time take it out on the road. I've had quiet time in airplanes, the back seat of a car, Starbucks, Denny's, and on the subway. When you commit to letting nothing stand in the way, nothing will.
6. Apply It: Having quiet time should be nothing like when you study for a test, where you absorb as much information as you can to pass and then purge it from memory after the test. Instead when studying seek quality over quantity its not about how much you can read but more so what you can understand and how much better you can get to know God. Once you have read a scripture and taken notes, mediate on what you have learned. Take what you have learned from reading and try to remain conscious of it all day. Look for ways to apply it to your day, and to you life. Reading the word is great but following it is all the more sweeter. Even the devil knows God's word, but he sure isn't following it. James 1:22 (NLT) says But don't just listen to God's word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. So apply what you have learned and share it with others.
I am absolutely no authority on how you should spend your quiet time, but I hope these tips help you to find your own groove and get you on the way to spending more time with God.
My Favorites for Quiet Time:
Pens: Sakura Pigma Micron Pens
Journals: Studio Oh Deconstructed Journals.
Music: Spotify Player
|Quiet time at Starbucks with my Mommy Bear.|