“I know I should have quiet time with the Lord every day, but, ugh, LIFE.”
This is something I hear often from both my peers and younger women I walk with in faith.
I get where they’re coming from. As a wife and mother who works outside the home as well as inside it, I absolutely get it.
For the woman who gets up early as it is and goes to bed later than everyone else in the house, the thought of getting up even earlier feels daunting. Those who are already struggling to balance all their responsibilities feel guilty about not making quiet time a regular occurrence but have no idea how to make it happen.
It’s not that they don’t want to honor God by giving Him their time; it’s more so that they don’t know how to make it part of their day. No one in a similar life circumstance has shown them how.
As I have listened to these women tell their stories, what I realized quickly is that they would benefit from a new way to approach quiet time.
Recognize false beliefs about ‘quiet time’
Whether they realize it or not, many of the women I hear from have rather set definitions of quiet time.
For one thing, somewhere along the way they picked up the idea that quiet time must be a large chunk of time, like 30 minutes (or more).
For another, they have also picked up the notion that quiet time can only happen in a literally quiet, secluded place. Somewhere away from distractions. In other words, somewhere outside the normal rhythms of the day.
While it’s true that secluded locale and a chunk of time are unparalleled ways to connect with God, it is 100% false that quiet time MUST fall within these parameters to count as valid.
Redefine ‘quiet time’
Quiet time can happen in busy places, and it can happen for various lengths of time. Communion with God does not have to be a siloed part of my day, and in fact, it shouldn’t be.
I have set the LORD continually before me; Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” Psalm 16:8 (emphasis added)
Quiet time is a matter of the heart more so than duration or place.
“The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7
You could be in a prayer closet for more than a hour, but if your heart is not in tune with God, then it’s all for naught. Conversely, you could be at a McDonald’s playplace with your Bible open while your kids play and have a heart in tune with God.
More often than not, my days contain a playplace rather than a closet, so I make the most of it. I encourage other women to do the same.
Wherever you are, worship. Wherever you are, commune.
Start small and build your ‘study muscle’
Extended quiet time in a solitary place does follow the example of Jesus set forth in verses such as Luke 15:6. That said, women too often believe this example the starting point rather than the goal.
Jesus did a lot of things we cannot do without growing into them.
If you were wanting to run for 30 minutes but have never run for even 10 minutes, is it logical to expect yourself to run a full 30 right off the bat? Of course not. Thirty is the goal, not the starting point.
With running, you begin with short bursts, train your muscles and build up to your goal. I have found the same to be true with quiet time.
I started with smaller bursts, trained my “study muscles” and worked my way up to 30 minutes (sometimes more) over the course of time.
After trying and failing at several other methods, I found the short-burst approach to be the single most effective way to build a hunger for time alone with God.
Like with running, once you train your muscles for a certain activity, they begin to crave that activity. The same is true for quiet time. (No wonder the apostle Paul liked to talk about running so much!)
A practical way to do all of this
My guide Get Daily Quiet Time Without Adding to Your Schedule captures a simple, straight-forward approach to building “study muscle.”
- Learn how to creatively find time within your current schedule for moments with God.
- Reflect on Scripture.
- Memorize a verse.
- Build your “study muscles.”
You don’t have to think about how to do it; the direction is clear and easy to follow.
The guide is a free gift exclusive to my BEFs (Best Email Friends). If you’re ready to begin building quiet time into your day, or or just curious how I did it, join the BEF list today and I’ll send you the guide straight to your inbox.
As a BEF, you will also get other exclusive content, offers, behind-the-scenes peeks at my home life and more. As well as my undying gratitude.
Either way, I pray for your success in building quiet time into your day with a new perspective!