I love those who love me, and those who seek me diligently find me. -Proverbs 8:17
Having a good relationship with those we love doesn’t happen unless we put in the extra effort to cultivate and prioritize the relationship. For example, we can’t just sit back and expect to have intimacy with our spouse without making time for them and taking the steps required to make them feel loved and appreciated. The same can be said about our relationship with God. When and how we spend time with Him communicates our commitment to Him.
When seeking to improve our relationships with loved ones, we may read books or participate in Bible studies that help us grow. One of my favorite resources to help strengthen relationships is the 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman.
When I took the assessment in this book to help me understand what makes me feel loved, I was not surprised to learn that my primary love language is quality time. When someone special puts everything else aside to spend time with me, it doesn’t even matter what we are doing together, I feel loved.
When I think about spending quiet time with God, this is what comes to mind for me. When I spend QUALITY time with Him, I am communicating my love and commitment to Him. This concept may seem simple, but it took some time for me to understand that God is not concerned with me checking some imaginary boxes of things I am “supposed” to do in order to have a proper quiet time.
When I first began spending time with God, I struggled with knowing what things I should be doing to make my time with Him effective. I was worried about it being perfect, placing unnecessary expectations on myself and feeling like a failure when I didn’t have enough time to finish everything that I thought I needed to do. This was a trap Satan used to discourage me from seeking God in my quiet moments. My mind was too focused on my to-do list and not on my time with God.
I don’t know if you have ever struggled with finding the perfect quiet time, but I want to encourage you with what I have learned. There are no rules when it comes to spending time with our Lord. He is so gracious and loving that He just wants to spend quality time with us each day through His Word. He made us each uniquely and our time with Him should also be unique.
I have found that each morning when I rise and sit in my favorite spot with a cup of hot coffee, I can lift my heart to him, open His word and let Him guide me from there. He has no expectations or checklists for our time together and I shouldn’t have them either. I feel most loved when others simply pause and give me their undivided attention and it is the same with God. I show my love for Him when I put down all the distractions of this world and focus on Him before embarking on the busyness that the day ahead holds.
Our relationships grow stronger when we make strengthening them a priority in our lives. We become stronger the more we spend time with God. Whether it’s one verse a day, multiple chapters a day, 15 minutes in the morning, an hour in the evening, or church every Sunday and Wednesday. With every step we take, we get to know Him more and that makes us strong.
What does quality time with God look like to you? What is something that you can let go of in your quiet time routine that does not seem to be bearing fruit?
What are some of the distractions that Satan uses to keep you from being fully present during your quiet time? What can you do to overcome these distractions?
What is your love language? How does knowing your love language help you better understand how to love the Lord?