Wednesday, August 10, 2011

That Thing I Do

Some people like to watch tv, others like to customize their Pandora play lists, yet others like to exercise; what is my favorite this to do when boredom sets in? WRITE! 

It is such a simple 5 letter word; write.  Webster describes it as "to compose and produce in words or characters duly set down"; while I describe it simply as "therapy".

Anyway, to my point - yes I have one.  Today, after what seemed like a month long sabbatical, I went to our Wednesday night Bible study and wouldn't you know it the subject was on the one thing that God and I have been sparring about for weeks, meh - more like months, and that is how to spend time with God.

Have you ever known the right thing to do, even desperately wanted to do it, made all the plans in the world to follow out on those intentions only to end up doing exactly the opposite or not quite that thing?  GOOD!  Me too!  Now doesn't it feel good to know you aren't the only person in the world suffering this same mind boggling phenomena?  Ok, so maybe it isn't that big of a deal, or is it?! (dun dun dun)

Back to my point, the lesson from tonight.  Ok, so I need to preface it (the lesson).  In school didn't you just hate or at least get extremely bored when the teacher retaught something you already learned or perhaps when going to the next level in a subject the teacher retaught "the basics" before teaching the new stuff?  Well, I did. (Though I was guaranteed good marks since I already knew it.)  The lesson from tonight is one that I've heard/learned a time or two or three before; yet tonight it felt fresh and new. The reason?  It was a lesson that I had forgotten or rather unlearned from too much time of no practice.  Think of it like a foreign language.  I studied French in Middle and High School for a total of 5 years.  I could speak it well, read it even better and write it decently; however, today I can't do a lick of it.  Why?  I stopped using it, stopped practicing it - I haven't needed it in the last 16 years.  That is what this lesson was to me; except the subject is something that I need! (Ok, pushy much?  I'm getting on with it!)

THE LESSON (The bold words give it a more authoritative feel; or not!)
A daily quiet time is a special time set aside to be alone with God through Bible reading and prayer.
The Purpose:
  1. To express your love to God.
    1. This takes time and conversation
  2. To receive guidance from God
    1. This is essentially receiving my marching orders
Why do I want to receive these orders?  Because God can ALWAYS be trusted. (Trust is a subject that I really want to share with you all but will have to come back to it another time.)

John 15 (Vine and branches) key word is Remain (abide).  This is the one thing to always remember to do; abide with Jesus, remain in Him.  Why?  Because we can go through the motions of spending time with God and never actually abide with Him.
  • AND FOLKS THAT IS WHERE I AM TODAY! My full circle.  I'm laying it all out here - I have been simply going through the motions, heck I still am and it is costing me dearly.  It is costing me my Jesus.  Not that he has ever left or turned His back on me, but that I have turned my back on Him in practice, if not in my heart.
How do I fix this?
  1. Keep my time honest, deep and personal
  2. Deepen the the quality of my devoted time to God
  3. Broaden my devoted time from a daily appointment to an all day attentiveness to His presence
    1. Essentially the conversation with Him never ends; there is no Amen.
You  may find yourself wondering why this is important and why you have bothered to read all the way to the end.  Unfortunately I don't have an answer to that, though I thank you for sticking with it!  What I do know is that this is real to me, it is in my heart and my head and I desperately needed the reschooling.  Why?  Because a flower cannot blossom with water and light.

A few verses to help you on your way:
  • Psalm 25:4-5
  • Proverbs 3:6
  • Psalm 37:5
  • Matthew 11:28
  • Philippians 4:6

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