If you spend anytime around me you know I am advocate for christian men and women spending daily time with the Lord. The question I usually get after a statement like that is this, how do I have a quiet time? This is not the perfect plan or a must-do guide to having a perfect quiet time. I am going to lay out what I do and you can modify how you do it, the key is to just have one.
Set aside at least an hour each day.
This can seem quite daunting at first. Most christians have enough trouble figuring out what to say for a blessing, how am I supposed to spend an hour with the Lord everyday? Maybe start small. 15 minutes at first and let it grow. The more you do it the more natural it will become. Soon you may see it go beyond an hour.
I recommend the mornings because it just really starts my day off right. However, that is feasible for everyone. One man in the church I serve leaves his house at 4:30 AM everyday to head to work. Just be consistent. If you are going to do it at 7AM then do it that time everyday. Also, be consistent where you do it as well. I don’t like say getting in a routine because it’s not just something to check-off, but if you have a set play of when and where you are more likely to do it.
Spend 10 minutes in worship through music.
Whatever music you like spend 10 minutes in worship before you start. Right now I am on Rend Collective kick in my quiet time, but I often listen to a variety of music including guys like Shai Linne. Songs a lot of times express what we want to say when we don’t know what to say. When you sing think about the words you are singing.
Spend 10-15 minutes in intentional prayer for others.
I once had a seminary professor ask me this, “Jared, if God answered all your prayers the past year how many people would be saved due to God answering those prayers?” Wow! Shot to the heart. How true though that our prayers can become so selfish. So I set aside a different things to pray for each day.
Sunday: All the Bible-beliving churches around the world who will proclaim the gospel this day, and for those who will hear it. Also, a UPG or UUPG.
Monday: My seminary (Students, profs, and its mission)
Tuesday: Churches I have previously served and attended. (Their leadership, congregation, and so on.)
Wednesday: Former kids I had at FUGE Camps over my 3 summers.
Thursday: Friends and people I know who are lost, by name.
Friday: Missionaries I know, and the countries I have been able to travel to on mission trips.
Saturday: SBC agencies (Other seminaries, IMB, NAMB, ERLC)
I also pray for certain things everyday. My wife, family and in-laws, my church and pastor, the students in my ministry, other pastors at our church, best friends and mentors in my life. If you don’t know what to pray go to the Scriptures and let that be your guide.
Spend 30-40 minutes for worship through the Word.
This is a time you will hear God speak. The Bible is the very Word of God and when read we are hearing His words. If I read an Epistle I try to read the whole thing. The Epistles were letters and they are best read in one sitting, because when you get a letter you read the whole thing not parts at a time.
Take notes, write down questions, underline, and study. Saturate yourself with the word of God. If you read a chapter a day then read it two or three times. Get to the meaning of the text. This will be a time you will learn to look forward to and treasure. Some people will try a chronological Bible reading plan to read it in one year. That’s awesome, just don’t get discouraged. When you get in Leviticus you might be ready to hang it up. Remember the Bible is God-breathed and all of it is useful. I recommend a good study Bible to help understand what you are reading. I use the “ESV Study Bible” and I think it is one of the best.
Be prepared. I do not recommend opening up your Bible and wherever you finger lands is what God wants you to read. Read through books start to finish. If you have never done this I recommend three books to starts with. John, Acts, or Proverbs.
Spend 10 minutes of meditation and prayer
This is a time to just focus on God. Listen to God, maybe go back to the Word as you feel led. Then pray. I pray that God will use me as His vessel, He will use me to further His gospel for His glory and not mine, and many other things that I may need pray for. Write down your request in a journal and flip through it every few months and see things that God has delivered on.
The most important thing: Just do it.
The first day may be the hardest but if you stick to it I really believe this will be one the things you look most forward to everyday. Find someone to hold you accountable that you are doing yours, and likewise do the same for them. Where we spend the most of our time is where our heart is. I hope this has been helpful and if you have any questions please feel free to contact me!