As people of faith we understand the importance of time spent with God. Just as we understand that exercise is important for staying healthy and eating a balanced diet along with a good night’s sleep all make for better living and a better day ahead. It’s not that we don’t think these things are important, we do! But sometimes the immediate overrides the important and our days become jumbled and we put off what we know is important for later.
“Later” happens later but sometimes not at all as other things fill our time. Our energy levels sway and we find ourselves vegging on the couch, scrolling our phones and, in a brain-dead state, playing WordScapes. (Or maybe that’s just me.)
I don’t often do book promo’s but my writing friend, Betsy de Cruz, has written a great book, More of God and how to achieve this in our lives. I love her subtitle. “A Distracted Woman’s Guide to More Meaningful Quiet Times”. And that’s me. I can become distracted quite easily by the buzz of my phone, kids needing attention and even my own thoughts that fly around in my head.
But Betsy gets this! She understands what it’s like to want more of God in our lives but not always achieving that because we don’t have the necessary tools to get it done. We have the “want” but we don’t always know the “how.”
This is where More of God is a lifesaver. Betsy gives great practical tips and simple study ideas for busy women. One of my favorite ideas she shares is the “Word for Today.” Here’s what she says:
I love choosing one word for the day from my morning Scripture reading. It’s the easiest way I know to take what I read with me into the rest of my day. I learned it from a sister in the faith during a prayer retreat. Rather than a serious Bible study method, it’s a way to seek to hear God’s voice through the words of Scripture.
- Read the passage once quickly, and then a second time prayerfully and slowly.
- Choose one verse that speaks to you the most. Write your verse down, and read it several times slowly, asking God to show you one word that sums it up best.
- Write your word down. Spend a few moments thinking and praying. What does the word mean to you and how it might make a difference in your day? Ask God if He wants to speak anything to you through your word. Be still and actually listen for a few moments. Do any impressions come to mind?
- If you like, write a one sentence prayer in response to what God showed you. Make an intention to remember your word and your prayer later during the day. If you forget, don’t sweat it. You’ll see it tomorrow in your journal.
Just to give you some examples, I’ve chosen words like “Believe,” “Love,” “Blessed,” “Cling,” “Trust,” and “Hope.” One word can sum up what I feel God speaking to me in the morning, and I can easily remember it later in the day. In fact, I’ve gotten through many rough days by clinging to truth expressed in one word and turning it into a prayer.
Another idea she shares is Make It Enjoyable — “Duty quickly turns into Dullsville. If I don’t look for ways to keep it fresh and enjoyable, my quiet time falls into a stale routine before I know it.” (Betsy)
She shares some real creative ideas in adding life to our devotional time.
One of them is coloring! — This last fall I joined a book study with a group of ladies and it was so relaxing and enjoyable. It was pretty typical in the sense of reading the book on our own and then getting together for discussion. But the real game changer was the relaxed environment and activity the leaders had planned for that time. Our book leader set up the table each week with colored pencils, markers and coloring sheets. We colored just like when we were kids and discussed the book while creating. It was so stinkin’ fun and relaxing. Yes, I have colors at home and even coloring books but I hadn’t taken the time to sit down to just color on my own. My adult-self would have told myself to get up and do something! But since I had set aside that time for book club and the tools were there to do it, I jumped right in and found myself creating and relaxing in a way I hadn’t for years.
It’s these kinds of ideas for doing something out of the ordinary and finding enjoyment, pleasure and inspiration in an otherwise humdrum routine item that Betsy offers in this book.
I encourage you to check out her e-book More of God by clicking here. It released yesterday and is available for $4.99. (At that price you couldn’t even buy yourself a vanilla latte at Starbucks and believe me, this book will give you a bigger boost to your day than a latte… even an espresso… and that’s saying something because I love both!!)
Have a great day, friends!
Love and hugs to you,