Is your life busy? We are pulled in so many different directions that we sometimes wonder at the end of the day what we accomplished. How is your spiritual well-being? Do you find it difficult to find time for spiritual things during your week? Below are 7 activities that will help you in your Christian walk, if you incorporate them into everyday habits.
- Begin each day at judgment. Steven Covey, author of “7 Habits of Highly Effective People,” says to begin with the end in mind. We need to begin each day with the sober thought of putting ourselves at the judgment scene. Romans 14:12 says each of us shall give account of himself to God. Read Revelation 20:11-15. Imagine yourself standing before the Creator of the universe. A book is then opened containing everything you had done during your life. How do you want the page to read that will give account for today? This mental exercise can help us get focused for the rest of the day’s activities, should we be blessed with that time.
- Make prayer a priority every day. Is this not the most obvious, yet perhaps the most neglected activity at our disposal? We have access to the most powerful being who cares for us and is able to do what we ask (if it be His will) and yet we “don’t have time” to pray as we should. Does your “To-Do” list crowd out prayer time? We sometimes sing the song, “Ere you left your room this morning, did you think to pray?” Our thinking is backwards. We should be thinking to ourselves that since we have so much to do today, I must make time to pray! How much worrying could we strike off our list if we but took the time to pray to God? Prayer gives you peace of mind that God is in control. How much of our time is wasted because we are trying to do something our way? In the end, we realize that we were going about it all wrong. When we have God’s ear, we have God’s hands.
- Spend personal devotional time in God’s word. How often do you eat? If we went a day without food, our stomach would let us know about it! The body needs the daily nourishment. Our spiritual body needs daily spiritual food as well. Jesus taught His disciples to pray and included, “Give us this day our daily bread.” Jesus is also called the“bread of life” in John 6:48. Is your spiritual stomach telling you something if you go a day without the bread of life?“So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Rom. 10:17). We can’t afford to go through a day without strengthening our faith. Our enemy is looking for the opportune moment to attack us. What better time than when we are so busy and tired that we go without our food and forget our sword and shield (Eph. 6)! By taking time each day to spend with God in His word, we are making sure we are nourished for the day and have our faith strengthened.
- Meditation. Focus on what God has done for you throughout the day. Meditation is almost a lost art in our culture. Even marketers know that we can’t focus our attention on things for very long. Have you noticed how many different camera angles and different things go on during a 30 second commercial on television? My father-in-law said when brethren from Italy came to the states for a visit and saw American T.V., they actually got dizzy from the non-stop action and colors in the commercials!
We need to exercise our mental capacity. Try taking Philippians 4:8 and write it down on a piece of paper and put it in your pocket. Take it out when you eat lunch, when you are in line somewhere, when you are stuck in traffic, after dinner, sitting in the stands at the ballpark, etc. Not only will this exercise “set your mind on things above” (Colossians 3:2), it will keep out thoughts that shouldn’t be allowed in our minds in the first place.
- Serve others. We live in a great time and in a great country with many conveniences that even Solomon would have loved to have in his palace. Modern America gives us the dishwasher, the washing machine and dryer, electric microwaves and ovens, motor vehicles, and dare I mention, “fast food.” We don’t have to “waste” time going to the well to get the water. Do you know what “taking the clothes off the line” means? The stagecoach or train sure was the fastest way to get where you needed to go! How many of us picked our vegetables from the garden, took in the harvest and killed the meat for dinner last night? What great time savers we have! How are we using that extra time?
Jesus spoke of people who didn’t have time (or desire, in some cases) to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, visit the sick and imprisoned in Matthew 25. Yes, those activities take time. They are also the difference in being in the kingdom or being told to “Depart from Me, you cursed into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matt. 25:41).
- Prepare for worship. Have you ever felt so tired on a Sunday morning that the sermon sounded like a sweet lullaby? Or maybe the nodding of your head was not in agreement with the preacher but your head bobbing as you tried to stay awake? Those of us with children have had the experience of rushing around from the moment we wake up to getting the kids to Bible class, hopefully with their shoes still on. Make time to think about your bible class and Who we are assembling to worship.
- Share the good news with others. For those who have the responsibility (ability + opportunity) we should be looking for people to lead to Jesus. Philip takes away the excuse from us all in not being evangelistic when he goes to Nathanael and simply says, “Come and see” (John 1:46). Even in your job, you can bring up the Lord to others. Dr. Wike was a Christian and an optometrist. He would see hundreds of lost people every month and would talk to them about the wonderful God who created the eyes. Dr. Wike was able to lead many to a Bible study by his conversation of “Come and see.” We can do the same with our occupations.
Who we are is simply an accumulation of our daily habits. If Christianity is a priority, we should be striving to maximize our spiritual habits every day. <Michael Cawthon>