Christians are instructed to develop and maintain a consistent time for prayer, worship and Bible. This discipline, called "devotions" or "quiet time," is paramount in our daily walk with God. If we are to grow in fellowship with Him and obedience to Him, we cannot do without our devotions.
Do you want to experience great quality quiet times or devotions with the Lord? If you do, keep reading - I want to share something to you.
Before we proceed to having great devotional times with God, let's define devotion first. Webster's 1828 dictionary defines devotion as:
"A solemn attention to the Supreme Being in worship; a yielding of the heart and affections to God, with reverence, faith and piety, in religious duties, particularly in prayer and meditation; devoutness."
As such, our times of devotion to God must be times of focused attention and longing for God, times of complete surrender to Him, done consistently and continually. We are to be serious and persistent in our pursuit of Him if we really want to have a great relationship with Him.
Tips to having a great quiet time with God
Now that we've explained what devotions are, here are a few tips to having a great time with God.
1) Set aside the things that distract you and take your attention
As mentioned above, times of devotion require focused attention on God. We need to discard or put away anything that will distract us from seeking God. Jesus said in Matthew 16:24,
"If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me."
As a practical tip, turn off all your gadgets and put off anything that distracts you. Anything that catches our fancy can distract us, even the thoughts in our minds. As such, it is helpful to train yourself to just focus on God in prayer and Bible reading.
2) Silence your concerns and desires and let Him speak
While the Bible does tell us to come to God and cast our cares on Him, we need to silence our souls and give Him precedence. Seriously, we need to learn to put our selfish or self-centered desires behind for a few moments, if only to let God speak!
Many of us spend our prayer times asking God for something we want instead of asking Him something that He wants. And if ever we do ask Him what He wants, we tend to interpret it according to our own desires: if it doesn't go well with us, we will not receive it. This is so wrong.
If we want to enjoy God, we've got to be full of Him, not ourselves. If we are full of our concerns and everything that is "us," we won't have room for Him. Jesus said in John 15:7-8,
"If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples."
3) Enjoy Him and nothing else
This last tip is very practical. Devotions are meant to give attention to God, to yield to Him, and to reverence Him. It is God-centered, not man-centered. Our aim is to please Him above all.
Jesus said in John 14:23,
"If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him."