HOW TO HAVE A GOOD QUIET TIME WITH GOD: Disciplines Required

Now that we have discussed the Benefits, requirements and structure of  quiet time, let’s look at some of the ways we can fill that structure. 

Bible reading

Obviously, Scriptures play a big part in our quiet time, but as you start this discipline, the focus should probably be more on reading than on study. Bible study is an important discipline, but it’s easy for study to lead you away from your ultimate focus—your relationship with Jesus.

How to read
You need a tool. It could be a hardcopy or soft.  You can download any soft copy of your choice on Google play.  They can help by giving you quick insights into the passages you’re reading without getting you too off track. You may start by reading the gospels and subsequently go on to other parts of the Scriptures.

Take advantage of this time to make your way through your daily readings. Just remember that you don’t want to race through the passages you need to read. The objective is to use this time to connect with Jesus, so read thoughtfully and prayerfully. As you’re reading, think along these lines; 

1. For what can I offer praise or thanksgiving in today’s reading?
2. Is there an example in this text that I should follow or a command I should obey?
3. Is this text convicting me of sins or errors that I need to repent from and seek God’s forgiveness?
4. Are there promises in this reading that I need to claim?

Have a journal handy:  a wide margin Bible or a notebook can be a profitable way to write down important thoughts you have during your Bible reading.

Meditation 

I meditate on your precepts and consider your ways. I delight in your decrees; I will not neglect your word. 
Psalms 119:15-16
Sometimes when you’re reading Scripture, you discover a truth that’s insightful and provocative enough that you just need to stop and process it. This is basically the Christian practice of meditation.
It’s not about emptying your mind, such as is encouraged in some eastern forms of meditation. It’s really focusing on God’s Word, chewing on it and turning it over in your mind, and as you do so, asking the holy Spirit to encourage, convict, and instruct you.

Prayer
Even though a lot of people struggle to feel like they’re getting it right, prayer should be an essential part of every quiet time. It becomes a lot easier when you stop worrying about whether you’re doing it well or not. It’s the key to maintaining that connection to the vine.

If you’re still hesitant about what and how to pray, consider the ACTS method. It’s easy to remember and sets you up for a potent prayer time. ACTS is an acronym for:

Adoration: time to praise God for who he is and what he’s doing in your life. It’s also a great time to worship him for the praiseworthy things you identified during your Bible reading.

Confessions: In John’s first epistle, we’re reminded that “if we confess our sins, he (God) is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” 1John 1:9. This is where you want to ask for forgiveness for actions, behaviors, or attitudes that you regret and  like to see changed with God’s help.

Thanksgiving: A spirit of gratitude is essential for Christian maturity. It helps us recognize the benefits and blessings in our life and stops us from constantly demanding more. Knowing that you’re going to spend some time thanking God for his blessings during your quiet times makes you more mindful of them throughout your day.

Supplication:  Supplication simply means “making a request.” This is the time you want to talk to God about all those things you worry about and loved ones that have requested your help in prayers. It’s where you make your appeals to God for his intervention in your life and in the lives of your loved ones. The ACTS model helps us to first appreciate God. This helps us to  reprioritize the things we request.

Devotional reading

Along with your Bible reading, you might want to find some other devotional reading. While devotional reading can be done with any Christian book, you may want to look for something that will address your heart, your age, your circumstances. You can also get yourself a hard copy or find one or several in any of the soft copies you have downloaded. 

There are a lot of  great devotional books focused on specific themes that are broken into daily readings. These can be great additions to your devotional time. When we set time aside to truly connect with our creator, we’re working with him to see that spiritual growth and transformation is happening in our lives.
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