Last we looked at some suggestions on how to make more time for prayer. This week, before we go deeper into the practical aspects of prayer, I thought I would share with you what my devotional / prayer time looks like.
I have a routine with my devotional time that I pretty much always follow. Most mornings my devotional time takes about 20-30 minutes, as that is the time I always have. In the weekends, I like to slow down and spend more time on reading God’s Word and praying for longer times. However, I find it is important to start my day with God — reading the Bible and praying. That way I also give myself the whole day to reflect on what God wants to speak to my heart and to my life.
Emily P. Freeman wrote recently in a blog post about a five-movement rhythm she has practiced lately to create space for her soul to breathe. The steps are: pray, read, write, read, pray. I have been following this as well for the last two weeks and I have loved it. So maybe check it out as well?
Read the Word
For me, it is very important to spend time in God’s Word every morning. I use The One Year Bible as my reading plan every year. I know I speak of The One Year Bible often; but I find it is the best one for me. It takes the reader through the whole Bible every year. Every day has a passage from the Old Testament, from the New Testament, from a Psalm and a verse or so from Proverbs. I feel that with all those passages, something will always speak to my soul. It is also easier to get through the long chapters of the Old Testament and the challenging passages of the New Testament when there is something else to read as well.
I know many read a book at a time. Honestly, I think that is a good way to approach God’s Word as well. Spending more time in one book gives us more time to truly reflect on what we learned. You can dig deeper into the words used. You can search more about the background of the book as well. And that is all good.
If you have read my blog even for a little while, you know I like Oswald Chambers. Every morning, I read the devotional My Utmost For His Highest by Oswald Chambers. Every day has a short text so it is easy to read. However, Oswald Chambers has incredible wisdom and he challenges the reader every day with big questions. So even though the text is short, there is a good challenge to reflect upon. Honestly, My Utmost For His Highest is the best devotional I have read. I really cannot recommend it enough and I think every believer should read it.
Sometimes I use some other devotional as well for my devotional time. But I don’t spend much time in other reading, as I prefer to leave most of my time to reading the Bible and praying. However, I like the extra challenge and reflection that comes from reading devotionals. I also find that God often uses those to speak to my heart.
Prayer is honestly the most difficult part for me in my devotional time. I get easily distracted, as I have said. But every morning, I try to leave at least a few minutes for prayer. I think five to ten minutes would be ideal; however, even a few minutes is good in my books.
In the morning, I pray for my day. I pray for all the meetings with the clients I have that day. I pray for loved ones and friends, if they are on my mind. Even just the short “God bless them” is a good prayer, I find. If there is church or Bible study that evening, I usually pray for the one teaching. During the weekends, I like to cover all ministries of the church in prayer.
My prayers are not often beautiful or eloquent. They are not the best worded ones you have heard. But they are the words that pour out of my heart. And those, I think, are the important ones.
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