How to Have a Quiet Time
Every relationship takes time to develop. You have to spend time with someone to take a relationship deeper. It’s no different with our relationship with the Lord. A quiet time is time alone with the Lord. Each day we need to set aside time with him for Bible reading and prayer. As Christians, our primary goal is to become “conformed to the likeness of [God’s] Son” (Romans 8:29). “But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does” (James 1:25 NASB).
Five reasons to have a quiet time with God are:
- We need nourishment from God’s Word to grow.
- We need to draw close to God.
- The Word is our best defense against sin.
- We need to be corrected when we sin.
- We need encouragement and comfort.
Three elements of an effective quiet time:
- Bible reading
- Prayer time
- Journaling and Bible note-taking
Tips for a meaningful quiet time:
- Recognize that you were created to be in relationship with God and he desires to spend time with you.
- Set a consistent time each day to spend with Jesus. Early morning or evening, children’s nap times, and lunch hours are typical times. If your quiet time is scheduled, you are much more likely to keep it.
- Get free from distractions (family members, telephone, TV, e-mail, etc.). Try to eliminate all sounds such as music that might keep you from hearing from God.
- If you miss a quiet time, don’t beat yourself up over it. Realize that you got distracted or chose not to have that time that day. Just begin again. The longer you wait, the harder it is to make it a regular habit.
- If your quiet time is dry, difficult, or monotonous, try something new. Consider changing your Bible version, changing your location, listening to the Bible on tape, or changing your routine of reading and praying. Enjoy your time with God.
Beginning your quiet time:
- Pick a quiet place that works for you to meet the Lord.
- Have your Bible, notebook, and pen with you.
- Start with prayer by asking God to
- meet with you
- prevent distractions
- reveal his Word for you today
- bring comfort and clarification for your life
- Read the passage of Scripture you have selected for the day.
- Write down some of your observations from your Bible reading by answering the following two questions:
- What does the passage say generally (what is it teaching me)?
- What does the passage say to me personally (what should I do specifically)?
- Record any insights, thoughts, fears, concerns, praises, or feelings you have from your time with God.
- Respond to God in prayer in the following ways:
- Praise and thanksgiving—“I praise you God for . . .”
- Repentance and confession—“I confess my sin of . . .”
- Guidance—“Lord, lead me today by . . .”
- Obedience—“I will obey you in . . .”