I have not always maintained a “personal Bible study time” or a “Quiet Time” or whatever you want to call it. One of the biggest excuses that I have used for not having it is “I don’t have time!” My daily schedule used to be:
- Wake up and get ready for work
- Go to work. For me, this meant I would usually get home by 5:00 pm
- Relax a little with my wife
- Have dinner
- Do any “family work”
- Watch TV, use the computer, enjoy time with my wife
- Go to bed
This schedule did not leave any room for “alone time with God”.
I have since come to see the error in this thinking. If I had a friend that I rarely talked to because I didn’t have time, then that person is not likely to remain a friend. But even if he does, then I will not know him very well. Christ is the ultimate friend that we can have. Proverbs 18:24 says, “A man of too many friends comes to ruin, But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” Jesus is this friend. If I want to know Him intimately, then I need to spend time with Him.
Spending time alone with God is important if we are going to have a relationship with Him. Now, I heard a preacher one time say that you don’t need to have a dedicated “quiet time” with the Lord because you need to be praying without ceasing (see 1 Thes. 5:17). Of course, I agree that we need to pray without ceasing. This preacher was making a point that you shouldn’t block off a time for God, and then leave Him out of your life except for that hour a day. I agree with that. However, I believe that in any relationship, you need to have some “alone time” in order to build that relationship.
Take the following scenarios for example:
- I am married. What if I chose to only visit with my wife once a week for 1 to 2 hours? I might even call her every time I am about to eat and quote a memorized “thank you” to her for providing the meal.
- What if I spent time with my wife everyday, but it was never “alone time”? I could make quick sound bite type conversation with her during time spent with other people, or during TV time. I might even pay more attention to these other people and the TV than her.
The Bible tells us that we are the bride of Christ. “I wish that you would bear with me in a little foolishness; but indeed you are bearing with me. For I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy; for I betrothed you to one husband, so that to Christ I might present you as a pure virgin. But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.” (2 Cor. 11:1-3 NAS).
If the above scenarios are no way for us to treat a spouse, why is it okay to treat Christ that way? It’s not! Re-read the above scenarios, but instead of looking at it as “the way I treat my spouse”, look at it as “the way I treat Christ”.
My love of Christ is evident in the way I share my life with Him. I should be giving Him some “no interruptions, no distractions, one-on-one alone time” every day. On top of that, I should feel free to share my entire day with Him. I can do this by the “pray without ceasing” that was mentioned earlier.
If Christ is the most important part of my life, then how can I ever say that I don’t have time for Him?