Kickstart, redo, ramp up, do over – what a great opportunity the new year brings for us to begin fresh. What if every time we fell we had a chance to get back up and start again? Guess what? We do! We have an opportunity every day to begin our day with fresh mercy, fresh grace, fresh peace.
Lamentations 3:22-23 states, “The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morning.” (NLT)
This year, let’s take a look at how to kickstart your quiet time — how to build worship and adoration into your devotional life so that it isn’t just another thing to check off your to-do list.
Kickstart by recognition
If you have ever read what is commonly called “The Lord’s Prayer” you will see that Jesus’ example on how to pray is to start with words of recognition of who God is “Our Father who art in Heaven…”
When we begin our prayers in recognition of who God is, of whom He is to us in a personal way, this can open our prayer life in a powerful way. Sometimes, we can become so caught up in this temporal world in which we live, we forget our ultimate destination. We can become so caught up in our own identity that we lose focus on our true identity — child of God.
Kickstart by adoration
The next line of the Lord’s Prayer states, “Holy is your name” or in the old king’s English “Hallowed be Thy name.” As a matter of face, we increase the beauty of our prayer life by spending time in adoration. It can, however, be a challenge to adore the Lord, to praise Him for who He is. This step is not listing the many things He has done for you, or recognizing His many blessings. Instead, this step is praising Him for His character, His identity.
Further, there are many things we learn about the Lord in His Word for which we can adore Him — He is:
- Almighty God
- Prince of Peace
- Everlasting Father
- Lord and King
In actuality, the list could go on and on. For the purpose of developing your quiet time, try making your own list of who God is. Then, use this list in your quiet time to praise God for who He is, at least until you are comfortable.
Kickstart by study
It is important for our growth to be able to read and understand God’s Word. Because the Bible is His love letter to us and it is a manual that helps us to live as He would desire, we should read it and understand it.
At The Journey, we offer a way to be able to study God’s Word together in community. We offer a time to discuss His Word at our weekly JCGs (Journey Community Groups) together with a plan to reading His Word together as individuals through our study plan.
Specifically, you can find a good devotional book, join a community group, choose a path that works for you, but to truly know God, we need to study His Word.
Kickstart by position
In the Bible we see many ways that people approached God. You can practice any of these. Do you struggle to concentrate or focus during quiet time? Do you find yourself bored? Try changing your physical position, your posture, or your location.
Whether you are praying or praising, try changing your body position — stand, kneel, bow, lay prostrate (face down). These positions can add a new level of intimacy in your quiet time.
Conversely, you might need to change the location of your quiet time. Try having your devotions in a coffee shop. If you journal, maybe try journaling at a different table or chair in your home than you usually do. In the same way, try changing where you pray — pray in your bedroom , your car, or favorite spot where you recharge.
Kickstart with music
There are many great worship songs available for streaming these days. For instance, choose an album or make your own worship playlist. You can then, put the music on shuffle and spend some time singing along with the music. With this, you can lift your hands in worship, kneel in His presence, dance. Basically, whatever way you feel comfortable expressing yourself in worship is a great way to enter more fully into the Lord’s presence.
Kickstart by listening
You may not struggle with having a full devotional life or worship. But one way many of us struggle is that we are just entirely too busy. We haven’t learned to slow down. Conversely, our quiet times often end up simply as a short time where we list all our needs and maybe we even remember the needs of others.
But do we truly slow down and listen for God’s voice? Jeremiah 33:3 says, “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do no know.” (NIV). These verse tells us that God will aswer However, if we do not listen, how is He to answer us? Our quiet time must include time for us to truly be silent. That is, to settle our hearts and minds. To separate ourselves from the busyness and chaos and listen.
Quiet times in quiet rhythms
Matthew 11:28-30 tells us about how we are to truly connect with Him. In the Message, it is worded this way: “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.”
Ultimately, we need to find time to spend with the Lord. A huge key to that is dedicating time each day, quiet time, to be with Him, to listen to Him, to speak with Him.
Will you kickstart your new year with a new dedication to spend time with your Savior?