As I write this article early in the morning, all the responsibilities and tasks of the day are flying through my mind. Between school, work, friends, family, hobbies, and housework, how can we add making time for God to a life plagued with busyness?
After all, if we call ourselves Christians, then loving God should be our number #1 focus (Matthew 22:36-38). But how can we love God if we do not know Him? How can we know Him without spending time with God?
The short answer is that we can’t. That’s why knowing how to make time for God in a busy life is key to building our relationship with God.
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The Importance of Having a Quiet Time with God
My freshman year of college, I was fortunate to have a Christian roommate. In addition to our late-night chats about classes and dorm food, we could also talk about Jesus and how we were trying to seek him during our college career.
But we had different approaches. I would flip through a daily devotional and pray throughout the day. My roommate would grab her Bible and blue journal, lock herself in a study room, and spend time with God for at least half an hour.
After we’d been living together for a while, I felt the Holy Spirit pricking my heart. If Jesus was the Lord of my life, why was I only spending 5 minutes with Him every day? Was I really spending time with him by reading a quick devotional while eating a granola bar for breakfast?
Long ago, I’d understand the importance of having quiet time with God, but something was missing. I was simply squeezing it in instead of making daily time with God a priority. I had to learn how to make time for God in a busy life.
Benefits of Spending Time with God
By making time for God, we experience the many benefits of spending time with God, too.
- Calmness to start your day – If you spend time with God in the morning, it’s a nice break from the busyness of life and helps you start your day with intention.
- Peace admist the storm – “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble”
- (Psalms 46: 1 ESV). No matter what you’re facing in the moment, by spending time with God, you experience his peace.
- Better understanding of God – Paul writes in Ephesians about how he is praying that the church grows in understanding and knowledge of God (Ephesians 1:15- 23). But this growth only happens by making time for God in our lives.
- Secure identity in Christ – Everything else in the world is telling us that we don’t measure up and we’re not good enough. Daily time with God reminds us that we belong to Christ. We are safe in his embrace and don’t need to work to earn his love.
- Experience the power of Scripture – Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” (ESV). When’s the last time you experience the power of God’s word like that?
- Prepared for the day ahead – Daily time with God is preparation for the spiritual warfare that we face every day. Satan is trying to keep us out of God’s will and trip us up. But spending time with God keeps us close to him so we can spot and disarm the devil’s lies with the truth of God.
How can I get closer to God in busy life?
Christianity is unique because the focus is not on religious practices, traditions, or spiritual works. Our faith is based on our relationship with Jesus Christ. Thus, to grow our faith means to build a stronger relationship with God.
As with other relationships, you get closer to God by spending time with God. This can be through prayer, reading the Bible, memorizing Scripture, and many other ways to spend time with God. No matter what approach you choose, having genuine, dedicated time for you and God to connect will bring you closer to God.
How can I have quiet time with God when I’m busy?
When I challenged the students in my Sunday school class to be spending time with God daily, one student expressed her frustration. “I never have time and other things always get in the way.”
I used to think the same way. But something I learned from my freshman year of college helped me realize how to make time for God.
There will always be something you can do instead of spending time with God.
My student was looking for a magic solution that would open up her schedule so she could have quiet time with God. Sadly, that magic solution does not exist because there will always be something else you can do instead.
There’s a laundry list of things I could be doing right now instead of writing this post. Why aren’t I? Because I decided that blogging about the adulting struggle as a Christian is important to me and I made the time. Otherwise, the time would never magically appear on my schedule.
It’s the same for how to make time for God when you’re busy. Decide upfront that quiet time with God is a priority.
Making Time for God in the Busyness
The busyness of our lives will never go away. In fact, I believe I am getting busier as I get older. I can only imagine how my mom managed to make time for God while trying to get four kids ready for school every morning.
Bottom line: making time for God in the busyness is hard, but not impossible.
And because the importance of having quiet time with God far outweighs all the things that keep us “busy,” we all can rearrange our priorities and put spending time with God at the top of the list. At the end of the day, that’s how to make time for God.
How to Start your Day with God
My day is always better if I start my day with God. I’ve done my fair share of “before-bed” devotionals, and I know some women who do both morning and evening devotionals. While you must find what works for you, I’ve learned that my morning routine with Jesus is much more productive than my night routine.
4 Benefits of Quiet Time with God in the Morning
- By starting the day with quiet time with God, I am setting a direction for my day—a direction that leads to God. I’m reminding myself first thing that God is with me and that my identity is secure in Him.
- All of the distractions and worries of the day have yet to sink in. So instead of thinking about all of the things that went wrong that day, I’m starting with a fresh, uncluttered mind.
- I have peace when I log onto my computer that morning. God anchors me by putting my focus on him.
- It’s less likely that something will interrupt me or pull me away. I’m usually making time for God early in the morning so less people are online at work and my roommate isn’t up yet. I don’t check my email and get few texts at that hour so I’m not distracted either.
A morning Bible routine is one option for how to start your day with God, but it isn’t the only option. My roommate’s night devotion routine really worked for her!
Perhaps you read your Bible in the morning and have dedicated prayer time in the car on the way to work. Maybe your quiet time with God looks like a Bible reading at night, and journaling in the morning. The key to making time for God on your busiest days is being flexible.
My Morning Routine with Jesus
Once you’re making time for God, it can be intimidating to fill that time. For some ideas on what to do with your quiet time, here’s the morning routine with Jesus that works for me now.
- Prayer – Open up with prayer, praising God, thanking Him for who He is, and asking him to bless our time together. Call on the power of prayer.
- Bible Reading – I either follow a devotional / reading plan or pick a book of the Bible and read a section or chapter every day.
- Commentary – Depending on the passage, I may use some biblical commentary books or my study Bible to understand the text more.
- Mark up the Text / Journal – I underline the verses that stick out to me and then journal my thoughts in a notebook.
- Reflection – I write what the passage teaches me about God and examine my life for opportunities to apply the passage to my life. If I’m doing a devotional or reading plan, I’ll answer the given questions.
- Prayer – This closing prayer is longer than the first one. Sometimes before I pray, I’ll write down a verse that stuck out to me, what I’m grateful for, what I want God to teach me, and prayer requests for myself and other people.
This is just one of my morning Bible routines. I am blessed to live in a country where I can worship and pray to God freely. So, on the days I go to school, I do an abbreviated version at my desk and spend time with God there.
How do I spend the morning with God?
If you want to spend the morning with God, my first recommendation is to get up early and do it first thing. Oftentimes, we try to “fit” God in after everything else (make breakfast, put on makeup, pack our lunch, etc). While our other responsibilities are not bad things, they can easily eat up our morning and leave the slivers for God.
Instead, approach your morning with God first. Next, build a routine and explore different and creative ways to spend time with God. All Christians won’t have the same routine with Jesus or quiet time with God. But we all will be connecting with our Heavenly Father, and that’s what really matters.
Ways to Spend Time with God
Throughout my mourning routine with Jesus, I use different ways to spend time with God. You can also:
- worship God,
- praise God with music,
- thank God for who He is and his blessings,
- pray to God,
- read Scripture, and
- meditate on God’s word.
In addition to these basics for how to spend time with God, you can explore more creative ways to spend time with God. For example, my friend dances her prayers to God! Whenever I visit the mountains, I like to gaze at the beauty of the landscape and journal my thoughts. I admire God’s handiwork by praising him and enjoying the beauty he’s created.
In our busy lives, we won’t be doing everything on this list at once. But you can pick one of the different ways to spend time with God each day to fit your schedule.
How to Spend time with God daily
Building your own morning devotion routine or morning Bible routine is important for spending time with God daily. It takes time to build a habit and spending time with God is no exception.
Building a Habit for How to Spend time with God Daily
- Pick a time for your quiet time
- Pick a place – not just a room, but a chair or a spot on the floor, a step on the staircase, etc.
- Pick a Bible reading plan or devotional book – Making time for God is always harder when you’re not sure what to do with your quiet time with God
- Write it down – Reflect on what you read, pray, mediate on, etc. so you can remember it throughout the day or later down the road
- Pick an order for your quiet time – If your morning routine with Jesus includes prayer, reading the Bible, and researching Biblical commentary, and journaling, what order will you do those 4 things in?
These 5 steps will create a Bible routine that feels natural instead of a burden on your day. Eventually, you’ll get to the point where your day feels different if you don’t spend time with God.
How do you spend time with God when you don’t feel it?
About a year ago, I was struggling with a sin that made me not want to spend time with God at all. Everything in me wanted to pull away from God, and I almost did.
But then I remembered that pulling away was exactly what Satan wanted. When we sin, Satan heaps shame on us so that we draw away from God instead of moving closer to God. Satan wants us to forget that Jesus has bought us back from sin and death and offers forgiveness for us in repentance.
So, what did I do when I didn’t feel like spending time with God? I did it anyway.
You may be wondering what good it does to read the Bible and pray when you’re just forcing yourself to do it. Well, 1) it saved me from spiraling into shame 2) and it eventually brought me back to God.
Little by little, God led me back to him, and I experienced the power of God’s word again. I could feel God reaching out to me, wanting to pull me back to him, and wanting to free me from my sin. It was such a contrast from the lies and shame that Satan was perpetuating.
So even when you don’t feel like spending time with God, do it anyway. You’ll find his promises fulfilled, his comfort overpowering the darkness, and his peace inexplicably reaching you.
Making Time for Daily Time with God
I hope these strategies for how to make time for God help you find more time for you and your Heavenly Father. But before you try these different ways to spend time with God, one more encouragement.
Persistence and perseverance are the name of the game.
It may take time for you to see results or feel your faith strengthen. Keep at it. Even if you don’t feel like spending time with God—do it. God will reward you for your faithfulness. And more importantly, the more we spend time with God, the more we want to spend time with God. At that point, making time for God isn’t just a priority—it’s a nonnegotiable.
What do you do in quiet time?
Leave me a comment below!
While You’re Here…More posts about Growing in Faith:
- 10 Lessons & Stories to Unlock the Power of Prayer
- Why You Should Keep a Gratitude Journal
- 50 Encouraging Scriptures for Emergency Situations & Times of Trouble
- How God’s Will is Always Standing & Always Sovereign
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