When the alarm goes off first thing each morning, many of us go from being pretty much dead asleep to within moments checking our emails, pulling up social media and clicking on the latest news link. This is valuable time and energy invested into things most of us feel we need to do – after all, it’s best to know the latest and be up-to-date. This isn’t necessarily a new thing. Socrates’ “Triple Filter Test” advised that people should simply focus on what is true, good, and useful.
If we are being totally honest though, at its worst, the reasons we do this have zero to do with what is true for us, good for us, and useful for those around us, and in light of today’s topic, it begs the question: who is defining for us what is true, good and useful?
“Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do.”
Many people have a desire to read the Bible, and they believe it is something they should do, but they haven’t yet made it a part of their every day, a discipline. To say “yes” to reading the Bible, we have to say “no” to those other things that occupy our thoughts and time. Our God is a loving God who wants you to know him, but we need to spend time with him.
Be still in the presence of the Lord, and wait patiently for him to act. Don’t worry about evil people who prosper or fret about their wicked schemes.
Paul had discovered the peace that comes from total trust in the Lord. When Christians mature to this point in their spiritual journey—when they no longer worry about the things they cannot change—then they rest in the Lord.
Before daybreak the next morning, Jesus got up and went out to an isolated place to pray.
In addition to knowing God’s word, Mark emphasizes that Jesus began each day of his earthly ministry with earnest, persistent prayer, seeking his Father’s wisdom. Jesus went to pray, not with others, but alone. The most precious times with God are those private moments between just you and him.
“Be still, and know that I am God!”
God speaks into our lives today, and his voice communicates a profound love that changes us in ways both big and small. God sent his son to live as a man, die on a Roman cross, and rise again so that we could be saved and know him personally. Don’t miss this: only when we encounter the love of God are we truly changed at the very core of our being. When we focus on what his words tell us are true, good and useful, connecting then also with him in prayer, we will find peace, purpose, and strength in Jesus.
How much time do you spend with God in your life? Do you pray to him alone, read Scripture, or spend time with other Christians?
The degree to which you hear from God is directly related to how much time you spend with him. Commit to him today—attend church regularly, get involved in a Group, start a Bible reading plan, and spend some time alone with God during your day.
Abba Father, I kneel before you to offer myself so that I may spend time and energy in your word and have a prayerful life with you. Lord, help keep me in the spirit of prayer so I do not neglect this commitment to you, spending time in your presence to know and experience your love. Help me to trust that your words are true, good and useful and bring them back to me as I pray! Amen.
This post was written by Gary Schnabel, a regular contributor to the LivingItOut Bible Study.
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