“When you said, “Seek My face,” my heart said to You, “Your face, O Lord, I shall seek.” Psalm 27:8
Let me guess. Your days are filled with kids and dogs and school and dinner and work and laundry and messy bedrooms and dirty dishes and piles of papers. Homework, birthday parties, co-ops, science experiments, play dates, shopping, bill pay, church, and more crowd your days and vie for your time. Once in a while you may have time for a hot bath or, be still my heart, a trip to the bathroom by yourself.
How did I guess this? Because I just described my days, too. Thankfully, I love these days – most of them, anyway – and I’m sure you do as well. But the hours come and then slip quickly away and leave only memories – and things not yet done. When the things not yet done are dishes or a library return, the consequences are not dire. When it’s the nurturing of our relationship with Jesus, the consequences can be catastrophic.
Ladies, in our busy lives, we simply don’t have the luxury of pushing our beloved Lord to the side in favor of other, more “pressing” matters, for we are desperate for His joy to be our strength (Neh 8:10) and His Word to be a light for our path (Ps 119:105). Our sweetest times of refreshment and greatest times of power come from our time, however brief, with the Lover of our souls.
So how can we make time for God when we can barely find time to think? Below are a few ideas to help us carve out small chunks of every day to nurture our relationship with our Lord. This list certainly isn’t exhaustive, and not everything on it will fit your lifestyle. But even if only one of these suggestions makes it easier for you to sit at Jesus’ feet and study the contours of His face, then I will have done what I set out to do.
Get up earlier than your kids
This one’s tricky! It isn’t always possible, but if possible, it’s by far the best solution. Our daughter highly valued her sleep for several years and would slumber well into the morning hours, so I was blessed to enjoy a vibrant, intimate devotional life, even though I didn’t always get up that early myself.
Until a couple of months ago. Our Peanut still won’t get up before dawn, but somewhere in the 7:00 hour, I hear the music of a pink, stuffed seahorse and small feet coming down the staircase, and I know a bright-eyed, blonde-haired lass is on her way down to greet me. Now I get up at 6:30 am, but I still don’t have much time before the day is in full swing.
But even without much time, getting up before she does to sit at the feet of Jesus and study the contours of His face is a life-line to which I hold tightly.
Pray through the Bible
This suggestion is near and dear to my heart, for it’s how I learned to transform my devotional life, my prayer life – my whole life.
I began this habit many years ago, but it’s never served me more than now. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have time for an hour of Bible reading and an hour of prayer! So as I read the Bible, I keep a notepad by my side and write out prayers that come to mind as I read. Each verse becomes a potential prayer for myself, my family, the church, the lost, social issues – everything.
I don’t strive to create prayers from each verse, but knowing each verse is His voice to me and that I can respond to Him keeps me excited about how I can pray!
Combining Bible reading and praying makes each reading come alive and gives me time to truly sit at the feet of Jesus and study the contours of His face.
Read the Bible with your kids – your Bible and theirs
Making time for God throughout your day doesn’t always have to mean making time to be alone with God. Though alone time with Him is important, what’s more important is that you’re taking time to talk to and listen to Him – every day. One way I’ve been able to do this is to read either my Bible or our daughter’s with her each day.
Some days, when she gets up before my devotions are finished, she cuddles up on the couch with a blanket and I read aloud while she looks through other books. Most of the time, though, I read her Bible to her. We began a couple of years ago when I bought her The Beginner’s Bible. She still loves me to read that one, but she’s old enough that we’ve moved on to The Complete Illustrated Children’s Bible. It’s fairly comprehensive and reminds me of things I’ve forgotten in the Old Testament as I’ve dug into a year-long, in-depth study of the New Testament in my personal studies!
As we read, she’ll often ask questions, or I’ll ask her questions. Together, we sit at the feet of Jesus and study the contours of His face.
Pray with your kids over everything
Prayer is common around our house. Our daughter is certainly no stranger to prayer, but it occurred to me a while back that, if I truly wanted her to know she could talk to God about anything, I should pray with her about everything. And so our prayer life together began – and my own prayer life has taken on a new, deeper intimacy with the Lord.
When I see someone asking for prayer on social media, I gather my daughter in my arms and we pray. When I can’t find something, instead of praying silently, I ask her to pray with me. When I’ve been harsh with her, I ask her forgiveness and request that she pray for me. We pray before meals, we pray before school, we pray during school, we pray after discipline, we pray before nap time and we pray at bedtime. We pray for friends and family and strangers and dolls and dogs. Together, every day, we sit at the feet of Jesus and study the contours of His face.
Listen to uplifting music
Our family loves music! And more often than not, what’s playing in the background is music that draws our hearts closer to Jesus.
Our daughter has her own playlist on my iPod of children’s Sunday School songs and Slugs and Bugs Sing the Bible. She also listens to the Train ‘Em Up book series on CD with lots of fun songs, and I often turn up the volume to my playlist, Praise and Workout. As these songs play, my daughter and I sing, dance, and praise together. Trust me, ladies, God does indeed inhabit the praises of His people (Ps 22:3 KJV)! During those times, I feel Jesus. I sit – or rather dance – at His feet and study the contours of His face.
So what would you add to this list? How do you make time for God, even on the days, weeks, years?! when you can barely find time to think?
There is one thing needful, Sisters. Let’s choose to do just that. Let’s sit at the feet of Jesus and study the contours of His face, one day at a time.
In His name and for His glory,