Ok, let’s begin by defining ‘Successful.’
For the purpose of this blog post, a ‘Successful’ devotional time is one that actually happens and is intentional. It also lays the foundation for us to more easily experience something God has for us that day.
Here we go…
Eliminate distractions | I’m a little ADD, so it doesn’t take much for my attention to get hijacked. If you can relate, you might want to try some things that have worked for me. Listen to instrumental music using headphones. Use a room or space where others are not present. Mute your phone and set it face down. Or if you use your phone for your devotion time, turn all of your notifications off. Set it to ‘Do Not Disturb.’ If you’re using a laptop, close all tabs for things like email and Facebook. They alert you when a new message arrives.
Make a plan | Treat this like an appointment. Set a time and stick to it. I’ve even placed it on my calendar before. And if you plan to journal, will it be paper or online? What will you journal? Planning ahead before your devotional time helps it to occur more smoothly.
Come prepared | Determine in advance what scriptures you will be reading. What Bible translation will you use? Do you prefer using a physical Bible, or an App like Youversion? Any devotional books or podcasts? Oh, and don’t forget your favorite coffee!
Include prayer | This may sound unambivalent, but I’ve found this piece to be something that can be easily overlooked. I almost always try to open my devotional time with God in prayer. Asking him to speak clearly to me through the passages I’ll be reading and for his Spirit to guide me to the areas of scripture I need to reflect on that day. Doing this also helps me to focus my attention on the things of God and away from the issues, errands, and concerns I’ll be facing later.
All 4 of these keys have the makings for a strong, successful daily habit of spending some valuable time with God. Now, this list is obviously not comprehensive, it won’t guarantee your salvation, and it’s not going to ensure a euphoric connection with God every day!
But here’s what it does do! It provides a basic foundation for us to grow in our relationship with Jesus that otherwise becomes virtually impossible.
I will meditate on your precepts and fix my eyes on your ways. – Psalm 119:15
Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. – Colossians 3:2
For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. – Romans 8:5
What KEYS would you add? Has this been helpful to you? Feel free to leave a comment or DM me.