Confession: I enjoy summer with days lighter longer, seeing lightning bugs at dusk, picking a ripe – bigger-than-your-palm tomato off the bush in our back yard and eating it on a piece of bread with a little mayo, hearing the recorded children’s songs in the distance becoming louder as kids holler for some money as the ice cream van approaches, along with some vacation time and reading a good book.
It can be a refreshing break from the routine I’m used to the other 10 months of the year. Most of that is a good thing, but there’s one thing that’s not so great about it: In the summer I struggle with being disciplined to be in the Word and prayer.
Why is that? Am I the only one?
I think most of that is because I’m wired to live best on a regular routine.
Early in the morning I’ll try to quickly read a short, one page daily devotion and often skip the time of solitude in prayer. So while I’m taking our dog on a walk I start to pray but my mind drifts off to so many different, random thoughts and honestly, I become frustrates with myself. Now none of those things are bad but it makes me feel lazy and I’m less intentional like I am the other time of the year.
During the school year I join a bible study (which I highly recommend doing) that teaches me, challenges me, and helps deepen my spiritual maturity and relationship with Jesus. For some reason in the summer though, in years past, instead of staying on the track, I find an exit and a hammock.
But it’s my responsibility to make space in my day to spend time with God. I need to be disciplined to make space.
We need our space.
We need to make space in our year-round, daily lives to spend one on one time in His Word with Him.
So God asks “When and how will you make the time?”
Ask Him. Listen. The Holy Spirit will put answers and opportunities in your life for you to make it happen.
Here’s some ways that have helped me lately and might help you.
Find a special space at your home. It could be at your kitchen table, in a cozy chair to curl up in, or a lounge chair on your porch. Put a pretty plant or a pot of flowers beside you along with a cup of coffee or iced tea. It makes a welcome feeling for you and the Holy Spirit to commune. It really can make a difference and becomes a holy space you look forward to going to each day.
Set your alarm a few minutes earlier in the morning or turn off the TV in the evening. Sometimes this can be more challenging but once you make it a habit and discipline yourself to do it, it becomes one of the sweetest parts of your day.
Challenge yourself to read a book of the Bible and write in a journal what stood out to you in the verses you read and why. There’s many to choose from in the Bible! SMC has a link to help guide you.
Keep a prayer journal. This personally helps me stay focused and intentional when I pray. It keeps my mind from wandering. I simply write what I’m telling God. And then it’s a blessing to be able to go back and read them to see how God has answered them.
So, make that space and time. It’ll bring you joy in so many ways.
What are some ways that keep you disciplined in your quiet/bible study time, especially during the summer? We’d love you to post a comment below and share how you make time in your day to spend time with Him.