Living Simply Saturday: Too busy for God?

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“Is it possible to be too busy for God? Our adversary loves to make us think so. Keeping us too occupied to connect with God is one of his favorite tricks…

Failing to make time for God complicates life  by keeping us focused on our own abilities- what we can accomplish within any given day. We’re afraid that if we slow down, we’ll lose ground, but actually the opposite is true: by taking time to fuel up, we plug in to God. He has infinite ability to work wonders with our time, and when we give him the first portion of it, we put ourselves in a position to gain ground.”

Not only does becoming “too busy for God” complicate life and cause us to depend too much on our own abilities, as the author of From Clutter to Clarity
suggests, but ultimately we lose out on so much more:

  • gaining victory over sin
  • growing in grace
  • being sanctified and transformed more into the image of Christ
  • experiencing beautiful intimacy with Him
  • receiving peace and comfort for our anxieties and troubles
  • becoming more aware of the work that God is doing around us and how we can join in that work
  • seeing the fruits of the Spirit become more evident in our lives- love, joy, gentleness, kindness
  • simply enjoying Him and having the opportunity to praise and glorify Him

Rather than talk about and around the issue, I want to get really practical with this one. This second half of From Clutter to Clarity
identifies very practical issues in our journey towards simplicity and clarity, but it will be valuable to us (myself included!) only if we take the opportunity to address these areas in our lives.

Personally, my own quiet time has gone in ebbs and flows since getting married and having children. My first year of marriage was tough, as I adapted from always having done my devotions before bed, to spending my evenings and bedtime with my husband instead (I slowly learned to use my mornings instead).

Changing seasons of motherhood have also impacted the way I spend my time with God: from during my baby daughter’s morning naps, then switching to before she woke up, then later while she played and the new baby nursed, then back to early mornings again, and now to my current struggle to snag little bits and pieces of time through my day (though I hope to return to mornings when my energy returns). Sometimes it’s with my children, or while they’re awake, sometimes it’s while I wash the dishes or go to the bathroom, or while I wait 5 or 10 minutes for my husband to join me in bed.

I found encouragement during this season of mothering little ones in the book Passionate Housewives Desperate for God
. Here is a great quote on this topic:

“When your children are small, it can be nearly impossible to even go to the bathroom alone, much less enjoy a half hour of prayer and contemplation in heavenly, uninterrupted bliss; so get creative! Copy chapters of Scripture or buy small pocket Bibles and place them around your house- in the bathroom, in the laundry room, next to the chair where you nurse the baby- wherever you might have a moment when you’re standing (or sitting) still. You’ll find yourself rising above your trials by God’s sustaining hand when you make His Word a continuous presence in your day.
If you have little ones, accept that this is your “noisy season” of life. You’ll have moments for “quiet” time later. Pray in droplets during the day as well as when you’re awakened at night:
Yet the LORD will command his lovingkindness in the daytime, and in the night his song shall be with me, and my prayer unto the God of my life. (Ps 42:8)
Pray with your children, pray when you’re bathing the baby, and pray in the shower- but pray!”

So here is the practical application: What are some of the different ways that you have been able to make time to spend in God’s Word and in prayer, during the changing seasons of your life? What techniques worked for you? Where did you schedule it in?

Please share with us, either in a blog post that you add to the Mr. Linky or in the comments section, as I think that simply hearing what has worked for others can help to spark fresh ideas for our own lives. Not every suggestion or method will work for all of us. We are all unique people with unique circumstances, and must find what works best for us (and I have found that it constantly changes as my season of life changes). I can’t wait to hear your ideas! 🙂

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  1. After experimenting with different times of the day to have quiet reading and prayer, I have found naptime to be the best for me. My daughter is asleep, my husband is at work, and the house is quiet! I love to pour a glass of tea and curl up on the couch with my Bible and prayer journal. I usually even turn the ringer off on my phone so I won’t be disturbed! Before I quit work to be a stay-at-home mom, it was harder to find time for worship and prayer. It was usually early in the morning or late at night, and my mind was never at peace. One of the many benefits of being at home is having time now during the day without always feeling rushed.

  2. Right now it is morning nap time for me! I was getting up early, and I loved that, but since I am 26 weeks pregnant it meant I fell asleep as soon as I put my toddler down at night (8pm yikes!). My poor husband didn’t get any time. So now I spend that time with him at night and do my devotionals during morning naps. I have found that as long as I make a committment to God to have a quiet time, He helps me find the time.

  3. Sorry I haven’t joined in lately.

    I haven’t been feeling well after catching a very bad “bug” just before the Holidays.

    However, I plan to “return” very soon. 🙂

    I still love reading what you and others write.

  4. I am struggling with this exact thing right now. I feel that I really need the quiet time with God and focus on my Bible studies, but I never seem to find the time. Or, rather, never seem to make the time.

    Thank you for this great post.

  5. I loved that quote in the book, too! It was very encouraging – as is your post, to realize that there is no one-size-fits-all, “perfect” time/way to commune with God.

    I’ve discovered the precious opportunity for prayer while my toddler is nursing…I nurse him before his nap and before bed, and I find that praying out loud during those times is, not only, a perfect opportunity for me (since I’m in one place for 10 minutes or so, quiet and no interruptions) – but it is a beautiful opportunity for my son to participate in my conversations with God. Sometimes I include him (praying for him, or praying from his perspective, for daddy and mama…) and sometimes I pray from my own perspective.

    We’ve been praying with him before bed for awhile now, but these times of just him and I have been precious, and leave me refreshed and re-focused!

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