Featured

4 Keys to a Successful Devotional Time

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 notifs offhijacked. 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 calendarit 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 biblereading. 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 | Woman with bibleThis 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. РPsalm 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. РRomans 8:5

What KEYS would you add? Has this been helpful to you? Feel free to leave a comment or DM me.

You can also connect with me on Twitter and Instagram!

 

 

Advertisements

4 Ways to Ensure Your GOALS Don’t Become Your GOD

I don’t want to WORSHIP my fitness practices (goals).

But I also don’t want to go back to worshipping food either. ¬†aka: donuts, candy, cake, soda, ice-cream… (I think you get the picture)

We all know these people. ¬†Their health initiatives/practices are their identity. ¬†It’s who they are known as. ¬†I don’t want to become one of those people. ¬†I’m a pastor and a strong follower of Jesus…THAT needs to be my identity.

o-JUNK-FOOD-facebook

This was me about six weeks ago…only¬†not a woman. ¬†Sweets were a distraction. ¬†They were easy, cheap, and tasted great. ¬†Today, I can honestly say that I rarely battle the indulgent temptations that used to cause me to gravitate toward unhealthy things. ¬†I’m enjoying exercising. ¬†I’m doing great at hitting my daily health goals. ¬†And that’s awesome!

But I’ve noticed something.

My quiet time with Jesus in the mornings has been affected.  Nothing serious.  But it could easily become a problem if I allow it.

What I’m really getting at is this. ¬†How do we continue to work diligently at our personal goals AND NOT¬†have our Spiritual growth suffer along the way? ¬†Here are 4 things I believe you and I can (should) do regularly to T.E.S.T. where our priorities are.

Think | Right now, think about it and really ask, “Is _______ taking priority over my Spiritual growth and life?” ¬†It starts by honestly asking ourselves this.

Evaluate | If something is out of order, why?  How did this happen?  Really take time to pray about this, because knowing the answer to this will become key in getting things back in alignment.

Scheme | Take what we know from that evaluation time and scheme a plan.  Somehow, we need to move forward with our goals differently so that we can avoid the mistakes that landed us here. Change things up a little.  Same goals, altered approach.

Tweak | (careful, not Twerk)  Similar to scheme, but this is taking that step.  This is making the new plan a reality.  Also, share your new plan with someone.  Ask them for accountability.  Trust me, this really helps.

For me, this simply means I don’t go into social media areas at all in the mornings until AFTER I’ve had my quiet time. ¬†After I’ve at least read a devotional thought and prayed for my day.

Call To Action!  Has this been you?  What would you add to this list?  May you achieve your personal goals, and may Jesus walk intimately with you every step of the way.

I love hearing from readers. ¬†Feel free to leave a comment below. ¬†And be sure to hit the ‘SUBSCRIBE NOW’ button above to receive my FREE eBook!

photo credit: www.vegansgoraw.com