For starters, thank you for reading this post. I realize there’s an over abundance of information, articles, books & blogs, social media posts, & endless text chats. Yet, you found yourself here.
Im not trying to be overtly humble, I just had that very thought myself while pulling back the soft leather pages of my Bible the other morning. Because I can only imagine that God feels that way about us sometimes, too.
Allow me to me explain…
I recently completed Arabah Joy’s 40-Day “Trust Without Borders” devotional and absolutely loved it. Seriously, 5 stars. It illuminated the scriptures in such a striking and relevant way for me.
Upon finishing, I carefully placed it on my desk next to my Bible & journal. Sitting there, staring off I had this moment of, “Well, now what do I read?”
Wanting to discover “the next best thing” I was about to hop on amazon.com [standard procedure] to browse other books and devotionals. I went to order something new when I heard, “It’s already right in front of you.”
I looked down at my Bible and without any agenda, I came to Isaiah 51:4:
Give attention to me, my people, and give ear to me, my nation.
How that search ended quickly.
I can only imagine that when we finally sit down, distraction-free, without a faith-based book, app, or accompanying soundtrack, to actually read what He has to say [and has been telling us all along]–He’s so glad.
Not that there’s anything wrong with those resources & technology [trust me, I love ’em, and I’ll still get another one], but there’s something about coming expectantly to the Bible, with nothing other than some blank paper, a pen, and a prayer saying:
“Write your story on my heart.”
Because I’m sure when God sees us do this, he too, says “Thank you for reading my book…I did this all for you.”
He’s crazy gracious and patient like that. He’s CRAZY in love with spending time with us.
Given my incredibly simply complikaited ways, I love how simple, kind, just, & loving God is when he speaks to us.
Metaphors we can understand.
Stories we can relate to.
He doesn’t speak in drawn out run-on sentences, with an #alliterationaddiction or punny captions; there’s no fancy checklists or complex to-do lists, no colorful covers, no structured devotions or reading plans, no grandiose graphic design, and no need for intricate planners or calendar apps.
Yet he’s a literary genius, a scheduling whiz, and THE creator of all things. He’s already written the world’s ALL-TIME best-seller and etched us into the dateline of eternity.
All He asks is that we come to Him—first & foremost. With everything.
We don’t have to chase, doubt, question, or wonder if he’ll show up because He never even left. He’s right where He’s always been, living inside of you, waiting to be tuned in to. Tuning in is realizing that something greater already exists within you and you don’t have to keep striving for it.
If you don’t know where to begin with the Bible and you’re waiting for the perfect devotion or the coolest album that gets your spiritual vibes flowin’, that’s all well & good–I get that, too. It can be overwhelming to dive straight in on your own. So praise Jesus there are some INCREDIBLE communicators of the Gospel out there who can break down all that theology.
Don’t ever prioritize your affection for an author/app/album/account over an attitude of reverence to His original work.
We often talk about tithing in terms of our finances and giving, but rarely do we think of giving him the first 10% of our days, and of our unfiltered, most attentive time.
It’s not about tithing “to” him or “for” Him, as if it were out of duty and routine, but by tithing with Him. It’s about getting in alignment with His ways & will for our lives. Because He speaks directly in stride with our small steps of sacrifice and obedience. He speaks when He knows He’s got our attention. You don’t quite hear the sound of His voice until you move towards it.
How else would you expect to hear from such a gracious God?
Bob Goff, best-selling author, speaker, & lawyer, said: “The battle for our hearts are fought on the pages of our calendars.”
Not surprisingly then, the fruits of our days are determined by our priorities, focus, and source of devotion.
Lift up your eyes to the heavens…my salvation will be forever & my righteousness will never be dismayed. [Isaiah 51:6]
So if you’re feeling stressed, strapped, anxious or overburdened, ask yourself, what am I doing to perpetuate this feeling? What can I scale back and adjust? Why might God have me in *this* season and what can I do with it right *now*?
You don’t always need a new devotional, another commitment, more friends, more activities, or more duties. What you need is to be continually tithing your time in distraction-free devotion. Wherever, whenever, and however you can get it in.
Start by clearing your desk, clearing your screens, and clearing your head. Invite peace into your soul & listen in, even when all you hear around you is the endless, restless chatter. Get present to His omnipresence.
And if He seems oddly silent? Ask yourself how persistent and dedicated you are to tuning out the noise, and tuning into His word.
Patience, dear heart.
NEVER MISS A WORD
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