Most Christians firmly believe in the importance of spending daily time in God’s Word and in prayer, yet, so many of us struggle to do either consistently. Perhaps it’s because for us to consider them successful, we think every time with God needs to leave us feeling 100% peaceful or sure that we’ve received crystal clear messages from the Lord. That’s not what happens every time, and that’s okay.
In the book of Psalms, David, who is called “the one after God’s own heart,” (1 Samuel 13:14) experiences the full spectrum of emotions as he prays fervently to God. He didn’t hold back from pouring his authentic, messy heart out to the Lord, and we don’t need to either. In fact, God welcomes it.
If you begin the spiritual discipline of spending seven minutes with God each day, you will soon find that it’s impossible to stop there. An amazing thing happens—seven minutes become 20, and it’s not long before you’re spending 30 precious minutes with Him daily.
Do it for the right reason. Do not become devoted to the habit, but to the Savior. Spend time in the Word and prayer not because other people are doing it, not as a spiritless duty every morning, not merely as an end in itself, but because God has granted us the priceless privilege of fellowship with Him.
3 Steps to a Daily Quiet Time
Preparing Your Heart (½ minute)
Invest the first 30 seconds preparing your heart. You might pray, “Lord, cleanse my heart so You can speak to me through the Scriptures. Make my mind alert, my soul active and my heart responsive. Surround me with Your presence during this time.”
Listening to God – Scripture Reading (4 minutes)
Take the next four minutes to read the Bible. Your greatest need is to hear a word from God. Allow the Word to strike fire in your heart. Meet the Author!
Talking to God – Prayer (2½ minutes)
After God has spoken through His Word, then speak to Him in prayer. One helpful method is to incorporate four areas of prayer that you can remember with the word ACTS.
- ADORATION: This is the purest kind of prayer because it’s all for God. Tell the Lord that you love Him. Reflect on His greatness.
- CONFESSION: “Confession” comes from a root word meaning “to agree together with.” When we apply this to prayer, it means we agree with God’s estimation of what we’ve done. Ask Him to cleanse you of your sin and help you turn from it moving forward.
- THANKSGIVING: Think of several specific things to thank Him for: your family, your business, your church— even thank Him for being with you in hardship.
- SUPPLICATION: This means to “ask for, earnestly and humbly.” Ask for others, then ask for yourself. Include people around the world, missionaries, friends, and those who have yet to hear about Jesus.
The preceding is an adaptation of Seven Minutes with God by longtime Navigator Bob Foster, a simple outline to help deepen your relationship and daily quiet time with the Father.