In what do you spend most time?
During my nearly twenty-seven years of being chronically ill, where my condition is very limited physically compared to a healthy person, I have frequently been asked where I get the strength and will to keep going, even when the situations are thrown at me! As a child and teenager, I usually couldn’t answer that question, or I simply said with a low voice “I have no choice”. Over the years however, I have realised that it’s not about the choices we have in life, but about the choices we make in life! Today I know that the strength I have comes from the choices I made early in life to spend time with God and to become disciplined in this area It’s when we feel sick, empty or burned out, that we tend to spend most time with Him, and I have seen this in my own life from an early age.
Obviously, the more we get involved in spending time with God, the more we can be disciplined about it, and this is what today’s blog is all about… spiritual discipline There is no growth without discipline.
1. From the inside out
Do you feel worried all the time? Burned out? Do you lack motivation or feel that you don’t have the strength to do anything? There is a great advice from Jesus in Matthew 11:28-30: “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” (MSG) This is beautiful isn’t it? Being a strong person starts on the inside, and that’s where God wants to start work, the inside. He is thrilled to work in you and he absolutely loves it! But the choice of whether we allow him to work in us or not, is our responsibility. He reaches out to us all the time, he wants to hang out, wants to take our burdens and He loves to see us whole!
2. An everlasting outcome
In Romans 12:2 it says: “Don’t copy the behaviour and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect!“ (NLT) Today we have so many options to choose from when it comes to taking care of ourselves. There are medications, energy drinks and even unnatural products etc. that we can consume in order to get some strength! But I believe that the real strength comes by his Word only! Nothing against the products, but sometimes we tend to look to them for a quick strength fix, but the reality is that those products only last for a small amount of time. On the other hand, God`s Word and spending time with it will improve your health and strength, not just for a moment but for a long term period.
3. It’s worth it
The famous preacher Jentezen Franklin once said 1“Everybody wants to spend time with God in heaven, but nobody wants to spend time with God on earth“. This is one of many great lessons I have learned and it’s totally true. So often in life we are focused on earthly things and the tasks and habits that lead us away from God, rather than the things that lead us closer to Him. Taking time with God requires so much self-discipline and perseverance, but I can testify to this being true that there is unending strength in that where you and me are able to break through anything that life throws at us. In my life, I have been through many health issues which causes the weakening of the body, but today I`m still full of strength and I believe that this is the reason of “feeding” my body with God`s word everyday. Spending time with God is like drinking and eating from a good source everyday that brings the right nutrition to our soul and body. You might be weak at the moment, but God says: “Where you are weak He is strong” and as it says in Philippians 4:13 “For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.” (NLT)
I recently had a picture in my mind that our spiritual life is like the Garden of Eden We can either cultivate our spiritual life by eating the right apples or the wrong ones. This means taking time for silence everyday, and spending time with God to hear His voice saying which are healthy apples and which are not! The more we take time out with Him, the more we can cultivate the garden and it gets larger and larger!
Take the challenge:
- What are the “excuses“ that you use for not spending time with Him?
- If there weren’t any challenges holding you back, what would your time with God look like?
- What will it take for you to overcome the struggles in order to spend more time with Him?
I want to challenge you to start taking time with God more often as it`s always worth it!! Start, cultivate, and see the difference in how your life goes from strength to strength. It’ll be like a new life and you will love it!
I hope I have inspired and challenged you with these words and praying that you can overcome the challenge with His power that can do immeasurably more than we ask or imagine!
With Love, Nathanael
#takethetime #blog3 #itsallaboutHim
1 Jentezen Franklin, Hillsong Conference July 2015 http://www.daystar.com/ondemand/video/?video=4334071377001