• Brenda K. Rood

Yesterday, I had a Date with God

Luke 6:12 (NIV) "One of those days Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray, and spent the night praying to God."

It has been a while since I have been inspired to write. It feels wonderful to be back at the keyboard.

Yesterday, I spent the day outdoors with God. This looks like spending 4-8 hours in silence, walking, writing, listening, praying, reading or even sleeping. The first time I was asked by a friend to spend 4-8 hours in silence just listening to God, I really wasn’t sure how I was going to spend that much time in silence. After my first time of taking a leap of faith and making space for this practice, it quickly became a time I crave. It started with once a year, then grew to every six months and this year it has become every other month. This is time for me to spend with God, Jesus and Holy Spirit.

As a Mom and especially now in Covid-19 Pandemic, I felt the desire for this time in order to reflect on where I am and make space to listen to what God is telling me. Yesterday, God sat with me. It was like being with an old friend, sitting on a front porch rocking in a chair. We didn’t need to say anything but simply enjoyed the silence. And the simple act of being in each other’s company. After, this initial time of silence, I started to feel a pull to write. My journal is full. I couldn't write fast enough. This is the first of several blogs to come, which were inspired by this time spent with God.

Do you know your love language? I realized yesterday why I crave this time with God. Quality time is one of my top love languages. Although I get snippets of this time each day and throughout the week with God. I would like to say I spend quality time with God each time I make space for Him. And there are times when it is amazing, but it isn’t always cup filling. To be honest, there are times it is just checking the box. The extended periods of time with God is like setting up a date with my husband. I look forward to it. I prepare mentally for the days and possibly weeks. I watch the weather in anticipation of what exactly we will do and what I should wear. It also like this as I prepare for my date with God. Time is dedicated to simply enjoying His company. This special time allows me to feel connected at a deeper level. My cup fills and my God love tank is overflowing. I need a longer time frame because it may take several minutes or even the first hour to quiet my thoughts and be able to hear God's voice. Or simply feel His presence.

I call this time, my “up” time. It is a principal of spending time with God on a daily, weekly and seasonal basis. This rhythm of taking dedicated time with God. This is a practice Jesus repeats throughout the Bible. In John 5:19, Jesus talks about the importance of the connection with His Father to know what to do. Repeatedly, Jesus leaves the disciples to go spend alone time with God. As written in Luke 6:12, he removes himself from those he loves to go and spend time with His Father. In following Jesus’ lead, this is a time for me to deepen my relationship with God. It is a time to listen. He reveals more of Himself in this time and allows for a broader understanding of who He is. It is amazing, I believe I know so much about God and each time He meets me in a unique way.

I want to challenge you to consider creating space for this practice. If you are like me, this is uncomfortable practice to start. Here are some simple steps:

  • First, schedule a time. If it seems overwhelming or not possible to spend 4-8 hours in silence. Try starting with 10-15 minutes.

  • Go outside or in a room where you will not be disturbed.

  • Set a timer.

  • Simply ask “God what to do you want to reveal.” Or pick a Bible verse and as you read it, allow God to reveal to you a word or a phrase and repeat it over and over.

  • And just enjoy His presence, God desires to spend time with you.

  • Repeat....Now schedule the next time.

A friend, recently reminded me that although a practice doesn’t feel like it works or is feels uncomfortable. Don't give up. It is like exercising a muscle. Eventually you will see growth and strength by simply repeating.

How do you create “up” time? What is your love language? Do you connect with God in a distinctive way? What fills your God cup? Can you share in comments below, so we can share different ways to grow deeper in our relationship with God.

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