Don’t Make It Complicated: Making Time for Jesus in a Fast-Paced World
Isn’t it ironic that we live in a world full of modern conveniences that are supposed to make life easier and more efficient, yet we find ourselves more stressed and busier than ever? We live in a world of washing machines, dishwashers, microwaves, automobiles, smartphones, and stores on every corner—all designed to make our lives more efficient. So why, when we lay our heads down at night, do we still have a running list of things we did not get to during the day because there wasn’t “enough time?” For many of us, one of those things that remain undone on the list is time with Jesus. The person who has freely given us more than we deserve, who loves us unconditionally, who is always available—no appointment needed, is forgotten during our frantic rush through the day. The bottom line is this friends: you always have time for the things you put first. (Thank you Pinterest for this beautiful reminder!) Jesus should be first. He should never be pushed off our list. And the great news is making time for Jesus doesn’t have to be complicated! Here are three simple ways we, and our families, can spend time with Jesus each day.
- Pray. In the morning before your feet hit the floor, at night before you fall asleep, and everywhere in between. This seems obvious, but sometimes we need a friendly reminder that God is always ready and willing to have a conversation with us. Thank him for the start of another day. Ask for help in that difficult meeting. Pray for wisdom on that test. Praise him for that promotion. Don’t make this complicated—fold your hands, join hands, close your eyes, leave them open, get on your knees, sit in a comfy chair, eloquent speech or a few simple words, speak aloud or quietly to yourself— the method is not what is important. What’s important is we take the time to be with God. By the time our son was three he was leading our dinner blessing. Why? Because we pray the same simple prayer every time we sit down to eat. We made it a part of our daily routine. And the simple, heartfelt prayers we speak anytime and anywhere, are probably the sweetest sounds to God’s ears. We all have blessings. We all have needs. We all need guidance. Let’s remember to take it all to God, our Father, who knows us best.
- Read God’s Word. The Bible is the story of God’s illogical, unending, and unconditional love for us. It is full of hope, wisdom, and guidance. It contains poetry, suspense, romance, good guys, bad guys, and miraculous events—just to name a few. There is something for all of us! At our house reading the Bible before bedtime usually means “read a story about bad guys.” And you know what? That’s fine with me (and there’s plenty of material to choose from!). It’s not about where in the Bible we read—it’s about taking the time from our busy day to pause and allow God’s words to sink into our minds and hearts. If we are called to share the gospel with others, we must first take the time to read it ourselves. Keep your Bible out. Dive into his word. Commit a few verses to memory. Write out a verse and put it in your child’s lunch box. Post scripture in your home, in your car, at your desk—wherever you will see it and read it each day. (P.S.– attending Sunday school, a small group, or church service are excellent opportunities to read his word. Just sayin’.)
- Act like Jesus. Praying and reading scripture are part of this for sure, but let’s not forget showing compassion to a stranger, forgiving a loved one, listening to a friend who is struggling, teaching our children, and countless other examples of kindness are all ways we can act like Jesus. And let’s also remember these important facts: on the seventh day God rested (Genesis 2:2-3). Jesus, after feeding 5,000 people, took time away to pray and rest (Matthew 14:23). If the Creator of the world and the Savior of the world could find time in the midst of their to-do lists to rest, so can we friends! They knew the importance of rest. Follow their example. Walk away from that to-do list to spend time in the presence of Jesus every day. Putting Jesus first may put that to-do list in perspective.
Making time for Jesus everyday should be our first priority, not our last. Not as another item on our to-do list, not because we’re “supposed to,” but because we desire to spend time with the person who gave his life for us. The person who loves us unconditionally. The person who thinks we are amazing and worthwhile. The person who blesses us beyond what we deserve. Make Jesus first. No excuses. And don’t make it complicated.