Part of the BIG changes that came to my life when God opened my eyes to the Doctrines of Grace, is a disciplined spiritual life. Before that I was always in a roller coaster of prayer and Bible reading, never constant, always feeling guilty about it; The truth is that I tried to maintain a life of prayer based on my emotions and not on the Word which is impossible to do. The Lord had dealt graciously with me; He has opened my eyes to see and my ears to hear and my prayer life as well as my Bible reading time have grown, little by little but steady… “not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own.” (Phil. 3:12)
I would like to share here what has been helpful to me (please, note that I am not saying this the way YOU should do it, but this is the way it has worked for ME) to battle against my flesh which sometimes seems so weary and tired, and distracted.
First I started to wake up earlier every morning. Every. Day. Every. Day. Yes, it is not always easy but the Lord has helped me with that. I found that if I didn’t set a time at the beginning of my day to start right with God, I would not be able to do it later during the day.
Second, I learned that in order to be awake and not be distracted by all the thoughts and to-do lists that seem to attack my mind whenever I start my devotions, I needed to be FULLY engaged in my time with God; so I started to bring a pen and journal, along with my Bible and some prayer books, to my devotional time.
My devotions look a little bit like this; I read the bible, take notes, pray over that Scripture, I jot down my thoughts again. I take time to review my memory Bible verses, (I have a system with post-it tags to know which ones I should review and which one I am learning right now); again I pray over those verses. Many times I use prayers guides such as Valerie’s prayer guide
, or prayer books like The Valley of Vision
or A Diary of Private Prayer
. How do I use these books?
Well, I read a paragraph, or even a line, and then I stop to make it mine, adding my own words to that prayer, which I also like to write down, on the margins or on my journal.
My favorite prayer book is A Method for Prayer. Freedom in the Face of God, by Matthew Henry.
O how I love this prayer guide! It has different sections to it, and again I have little post-its to help me find each section and I move them as I walk through the guide. Again, I stop, ponder about it, add my own words, and then I write down a prayer.
All these have been a great help to me, I am not distracted, I pray longer, and I really meditate on God’s Word. I find it refreshing to come daily to the Lord’s table and eat His Words which are sweeter than honey and keep them in my heart.
For this, I am grateful today.
Lord, I thank you, for helping me build a disciplined prayer life; thank you for bringing me to your Word, for opening my eyes to see and my ears to hear you. Thank you, because you have called me to sit at your feet and drink from the Living Water that satisfies my soul.
How do you spend time with God?
Would you share with us, so that we may be encouraged to persevere?
God’s Sovereignty in the Gospel of Luke
On Prayer and C. H Spurgeon
The Secret of the Believer’s Boldness (A guest post by Christina Langela)
Lord, Teach us to Pray (A guest post by Diane @ Theology for Girls)
A House of Prayer