De-compartmentalize Your Quiet Time

Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long,                                                    (Psalm 119:97 NIV).

I love, absolutely love, studying God’s Word. From the time I first said “yes” to Jesus, I have devoured the Scriptures. And yet, I’ll admit, extended times of prayer have been a struggle for me. Perhaps that is one reason it is called a discipline. I have to discipline myself to set the time apart—to “be still and know.”

But then I began to realize just how compartmentalized my time with God had become. My spiritual life was more like an outlined lesson plan with sub-headings A, B, C, and 1, 2, 3 than a love relationship with Jesus. So I made a change. It was God’s suggestion really. Why not pray and read at the same time?

When I read the Bible, I pray that the Holy Spirit will reveal what the words say, what they mean, and how I can apply them to my life. For example, one day while reading Ephesians 1:8, I felt compelled to pray this verse for several people. So I stopped reading and began communing with God in prayer.

Dear Lord, I pray for Steven today. I pray that You will open the eyes of his heart so that he may see the hope to which You have called him and the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints… I prayed that Scripture for several people, until I felt the promptings from the Holy Spirit cease. Then God and I got back to reading again.

Another day, I was reading Matthew 6:9, what we’ve come to know as The Lord’s Prayer. “Our Father,” Jesus began. Stop right there and think about that, the Holy Spirit seemed to say.Our Father. [tweetherder][/tweetherder]As I ruminated and marinated in the words “our” and “father” God spoke to my heart about the sort of father I’d always longed for and the sort of Father I already had in Him. If I had stuck to a schedule for my Bible reading that week, I would have fallen terribly behind. But the continual conversation I had with God about that one little word, “father,” was priceless.

Consider the word meditate. This word often conjures up images of Eastern religious practices. But it is a wonderful word that we should not be afraid to use. Meditation simply means to think deeply and continuously about something. For a Christian, meditation and constant communication go hand in hand. As we think deeply and continuously about God’s Word, He opens our eyes to see, our ears to hear, and our minds to understand. When you meditate on Scripture, you mull over God’s words in your mind until they move from your head to your heart.

So here’s my suggestion…pray and read…at the same time. I’ve decided that when I read God’s Word, I’m going to keep the lines of communication open. [tweetherder][/tweetherder]After all, this is the only book you will ever read where the Author is right there with you every time you open the pages!

Let’s Pray

Good morning Lord! I can’t wait to experience this day with You. I’m so glad that Jesus is in me and I am in Him. We’re in this thing called life together. Help me practice Acts 17:28 today…In him we live and move and have our being – in him we exist. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Now It’s Your Turn

Read Ephesians Chapter 1 and pray various Scriptures over the people God brings to mind. Don’t stop until God’s promptings stop.

If you accepted this challenge, let’s celebrate together. Simply leave a comment that says,” I did it. It was fun.” And if you have time, tell me a little bit about what you experienced as you prayed.

Want More?

This whole idea of de-compartmentalizing our lives is found in A Sudden Glory: God’s Lavish Response to Your Ache for Something More. Learn how to erase the line between your secular daily life and your spiritual live so that you can experience the Divine smack dab in the middle of the Daily busy blur. Check it out! And for all you pinners on Pinterest, I’ve got a great pin graphic on today’s blog post as well.

27 Responses to De-compartmentalize Your Quiet Time

  1. Sharon October 1, 2012 at 12:24 pm #

    Colleen

    Yes to the butterflies from me as well. It is beautiful and reminds me of the only Sunday school teacher I ever had. For about 6 weeks, my parents took me to church when I was 9 or so. A very elderly lady taught me Sunday school, none of which I remember, but I do remember that she gave me a very formal – grown up – note card to welcome me. There was a butterfly on it and a little butterfly pin inside. It is one of those little things that I remember and look back on as being possibly the first of many signs that God was pursuing me. Perhaps I will write down the history of my journey to faith starting with the butterfly.

    Thanks Sharon! I wasn’t planning on reading this post today but came simply to say that I read Ephesians 1 today at your suggestion and great things happened. LOL! I realized that when I read something I thought someone needed, I would make note of it and wonder how to let them know that I thought they should read it!!! Now this seems so silly. Obviously, I’m noticing it for them so I can pray it for them. (Recovering from feeling a little foolish. Perhaps I’ll have a cup of tea and laugh at myself just a little longer. 😉

    Have a lovely day. Sorry to be long winded. Lots of new revelations this morning thanks to your prompting.

  2. Anne October 1, 2012 at 1:05 pm #

    I did it and it was fun! I was compelled to pray for family members who do not believe.

  3. Lindsay October 1, 2012 at 2:18 pm #

    God prompted me to pray for my mom, who is not yet saved, and my husband, who has walked away from me and his faith. Thank you for the encouragement.:)

  4. Peggy Clement October 1, 2012 at 2:50 pm #

    As I was reading Eph. 1 God brought me to different versions to study the meaming of what he was speaking to me. To get to know him better and be with him and know his plan for me.

  5. Cherise October 1, 2012 at 3:20 pm #

    This was just amazing this morning! At verse 5, I prayed for my in-laws, who are Jehovah’s witness, and don’t know the close personal relationship they can have with god as their daddy, as they are adopted sons. At verse 9, I felt compelled to pray for an ex-boyfriend who isn’t walking with God anymore. Verse 10 made me pray for our government, and strangely enough, all the unknown/undiscovered creatures in the world that all of us would be united in Him, and also for my husband, son, and I…that we would be united today in Christ in everything we do, being led to do God’s will throughout the day. Verse 11-14 made me feel like praising God for all His good works. Verse 20 compelled me to pray specifically for my father-in-law. Thank you for such an intimate morning with my Father this morning, it was just what I needed!

  6. Nancy Beneteau October 1, 2012 at 3:40 pm #

    I did it and it was fun! I prayed for my husband who has no interest in turning to Christ. He thinks I’m in a cult. My brother in law as well. He is a Catholic and sticks to his Catholic upbringing. He got a huge does of Believers and their message on Friday night. He wasn”t happy as well. So I prayed for the two of them. I also prayed for my children in hopes they follow my foot steps and keep their eyes on The Lord.

  7. Louise October 1, 2012 at 3:49 pm #

    as I was saying, ” feel his presence, feel the love, he cares for you and I.”
    I came upon this share from Sharon Jayne~~the HOLY SPIRIT ANNOINTS US
    RIGHT THIS MINUTE~GOD IS POWER, LOVE, GREAT, AND MERCIFUL~~AMEN?
    I LOVE IT!!!

  8. Jan October 1, 2012 at 4:16 pm #

    I am going to accept the Challenge & I am also Praying that some Friends & Family will also Accept the Challenge.Since it seems that sometimes we Just rush through our Devotionals and Bible reading just so that we get it done.Which is why we need to learn to Slow down & listen to what God has to say to us everyday.

  9. Sarah October 1, 2012 at 4:18 pm #

    I have studied Ephesians for several years. And I pray the same prayer over family, pastors, the Body of Christ. There have been soooooo many answers to this pray.

  10. Diane October 1, 2012 at 4:31 pm #

    I did it, but with a surprising outcome. Verse 17 and my Bible’s study notes steered me in a completely unexpected direction. I ended up praying for our country, its leaders, and our church leaders! One of my study notes on that verse says, “The church will never have a comprehensive understanding of God, but the Spirit will always help those who are willing to grow in their understanding, which is made possible by HIS own revelation and not by human discovery. Revelation has one purpose – – to let us know GOD better. The Holy Spirit is given to us as God’s people to help us know God better. He is a teaching Spirit imparting wisdom and divine truth.”

  11. Cathy October 1, 2012 at 6:26 pm #

    I did it and is fun! What could possibly be more fun than to see if anyone else came close to ours – rare because the Lord teaches us what He wants us to know as we need it “in the moment” ! His mysteries being revealed one at a time ( Ephesians 1:9 ASV (9) making known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he purposed in him), Like the “Our Father…” “OUR FATHER” His Father is also my Father – Our Father…He created us all!

  12. lucille October 1, 2012 at 6:27 pm #

    Hi Sharon, it is time for our Winning Women retreat again at St. Simons Island. We did not know what a great speaker and teacher of God’s word when you were there last year. Your could come and rest and relax this year , Oct 19-21, I love your teaching and thankful to get it on my e mail.

    • Sharon October 1, 2012 at 6:46 pm #

      I’d love to come and be your speaking again in the future! What a great group of women!

  13. Lauren October 1, 2012 at 7:03 pm #

    I really enjoyed this message today! I had not thought of praying the Scriptures like that… I love it! I was really struggling with how to pray for some members of my family and I feel like God used His Word and spoke through you to show me how I could pray over them using Scripture! I will definitely treasure this for the future!

  14. Mariola October 1, 2012 at 7:33 pm #

    I did it and i was impressed by the Spirit to pray for my local Church, its Leaders and all the ministries they are currently organising/running to reach out to anyone who hasn’t heard about Jesus. It was powerful! Thank you Sharon.

  15. Joan Vanterpool October 1, 2012 at 8:55 pm #

    I did it and it was surreal, peaceful. The people I prayed for just started coming to mind, one person after another. My heart felt good to pray. God is Good!

  16. Dawn October 1, 2012 at 9:54 pm #

    Sharon,
    I did the Ephesians challenge! I prayed for my immediate family to better serve God, but mainly I prayed for the “Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that I my know Him better”-verse 18; and also direction. I’ve been having a hard time with preserverence lately and “empty nest ” syndrome. So glad you pointed out this Book!! I want relationship with God. Thanks again:)

  17. Gina October 1, 2012 at 11:05 pm #

    I did it and it was quite amazing. As I sat in the quietness and ushered GOD in, it was an experience of tapping into HIS glory..I am not sure Im expressing that correctly, but soooo many ppl were laid on my heart to pray for. Some specific needs, some just laying their names on the alter…It was powerful…to say the least

  18. Whoknows October 2, 2012 at 2:15 pm #

    My expectations of doing this were at first slim. But I pursued the complete chapter of eph. Read and felt”fire points” I then thot now what or who to pray for or share with. God prompted me for individuals who needed to be reminded of different vs through the chapter. As I types he empowered more to be said. Man, I am thankful to have obeyed and benin used as a vessel

  19. Tori October 2, 2012 at 5:17 pm #

    I did it. I prayed for friends.

  20. Pam October 3, 2012 at 1:09 pm #

    I took your challenge and felt led to pray for my pastor at verse 17 for him to have wisdom and knowledge in his studies of Gods word. Thanks for the challenge!

  21. Rose October 3, 2012 at 3:08 pm #

    I’m trusting God for my Grandfathers property to be completed. It’s been 1-1/2 years and very expensive. i have exhausted all the funds that i had and still owes others for helping me.

  22. LaTasha October 8, 2012 at 7:38 am #

    Thank you for sharing this post. I have been struggling here lately with making time to sit down and pray and read the bible. I feel like this is an answer for me that this what I am suppose to do. I tried it before but I guess at the time I didn’t realize what I was really doing. I have been struggling with a lot of things lately and it seems things just keep happening. I am so grateful that I read this. I am encouraged. I thank God for you.

    Thanks

  23. Roselyn October 8, 2012 at 3:00 pm #

    I know God will never leave me.

  24. Quada October 8, 2012 at 4:03 pm #

    Praise the Lord your site is such a blessing.I have never thought about the scriptures like that.I will try that and i know it will work.I have lost kids i want to see get saved and i know the Lord will make a way.He promised to save us and our household if we will serve him.I need my kids by my side and the only way i can have that is if i pray and trust God for that promise.Keep up the good work and u will be in my prayers

  25. Lillie October 9, 2012 at 4:09 am #

    I know God will never leave me! Praise The Lord!

  26. Tammy October 15, 2012 at 12:29 pm #

    I did it! Yea I am a little late…just read your devotion this morning but better late than never, right? What a blessing it is to pray through the scripture! I prayed for my family, college and career Sunday School class, my pastor and friends. Thank you for sharing this wonderful idea with us and bringing peace and joy through the scripture. Blessings…

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