Stumbling is better than not trying

There are some who consider making a regular ‘quiet time’ habit to be tantamount to legalism.

I am far from being legalistic – I am too lazy! But I would argue that not making a regular habit of prayer and Bible reading is effectively spiritual suicide. Going even a couple of days without spending some time reading from the Bible and honestly praying results in me becoming noticeably more worldly and less Christ-focussed.

As I spend a longer period of time not praying as Jesus taught us, my desire to do so decreases, along with my motivation to read the Bible. My thoughts are less taken up with God and more with my own anxious concerns.

I’m not a good example:

Don’t get the impression that I spend hours on my knees praying, read ten chapters of the Bible a day and memorize entire gospels. Often my time with God is a couple of chapters read distractedly while feeding breakfast to myself and one or more children. My prayers look strangely like I am ‘resting my eyes’ (sleeping!) and are fragmented by random stray thoughts.

To remind myself to pray I have photos of people I want to pray for on my bookmarks in my Bible – simple, but it really helps ensure I pray.

And what I have found is that even an interrupted, somewhat sleepy time dedicated to seeking God and His will really does make a difference. A difference which is very noticeable if those times are not happening.

Do you have any strategies for ensuring you get time with God?

2 thoughts on “Stumbling is better than not trying

  1. Amen to this! And, yes, I agree— a tired and interrupted time with God (in my life) is MUCH better by far than no time. In fact, sometimes that real, everyday helplessness is the exact cry of heart that brings me closer to Him and more aware of how limited I am, by myself. I write, “just tired today, Lord” a lot in my journal.Strategies…a time and a place… and a journal. And, when I am struggling to pray, I write my prayers out— I know this is not remarkable or “new”, but I find it very helpful.


  2. Hi Stephanie,
    The simple strategies are best I think, at least they are achievable! A time and a place are important elements of my own approach, basically a time when the kids are in bed (generally later in the evening these days as they seem to sense when I am up in the morning and decide to get up too) and the place is simply sitting at our dining table. Pretty easy but the simple habit of a regular time and place really does help. I like the idea of using a journal, it might help me focus better.

    Something I have done to help with praying is to put a photo of a person I want to pray for on each of the bookmarks in my Bible, it’s hard to not pray for someone when I am looking at their photo!


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