Thursday, December 4, 2008


Do you read devotionals? Some people read "The Upper Room" or "Daily Bread." "The Secret Place" is a quarterly devotional I've written for. "Penned from the Heart" just came out with their annual devotional for 2009: volume XV. I'm excited to be included once again this year. It's a four year tradition so far, and I feel privileged to be involved. (For more information, click over to my website and there's a link from there:

Do you have a daily devotional time? It's a time of getting alone with God ("go into your room and shut the door"---Jesus meant to find privacy) and listen. Pray. Read His Word. Worship. Sure we spend every moment of the day with Him, but devotional time is specifically set aside and vital for our relationship with Him. Not only our relationship, but also our own sense of well-being and peace. For seeking guidance and answers. It's a time for refreshing, for allowing God to convict us about what needs changing. But don't let conviction keep you from enjoying Him. It wasn't meant to shut you down, only direct you to live better, to dive into deeper intimacy with Him, to be used as clean vessel by God.

Take away the dross from the silver, and there shall come forth a vessel for the refiner. (Proverbs 25:4)

This morning, I came to the Lord, excited about a new day and the opportunity to meet with Him. I opened the Word and began reading. Then I stopped to pray over what I'd read and some teaching notes caught my eye. So I began reading them and I was convicted. But rather than let that feeling of "this area isn't pleasing to Me; let's change it" stifle my joy, I pressed in harder. We were bought with a price, God has the right to tell us we need to change. And in humility, we can say "Okay, I'm here. Change me."

I also like to get back into the Word throughout the day whenever I can. I have a journal and Bible specifically in my writing office; and a set for upstairs in our living room.

This afternoon, I prayed through Psalm 1. And tonight, as the sun sets outside window, I'm reminded of the psalmist when he says:

But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night. (Psalm 1:2)

I want to meditate on God's Word day and night as I pursue Him.

If you do not have a daily devotional routine, make a choice to institute one. Get alone with God. Enjoy Him. Delight in Him. More than once daily, if you can. Wake up to His Word, to prayer and communing with Him, and at night, go to bed with His Word in your mind and heart. You're headed into the heart of God. The place of deeper intimacy with almighty God.

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