Are You Spending Time With God Or Running From God?


Recently I made a commitment to take my youngest daughter through the entire bible. This has been such a great time of bonding for us. At night before bed we discuss what we have read for the day, I ask her 4-5 questions, she reads a devotion to me, and we end with a challenge for the next day.

Last week after one of our bible studies I told her I would be travelling soon and gave her my travel dates. One of those trips would take place later in the week. As I told her she looked at me as if I had crushed her spirit. It then dawned on me she was concerned about our bible study time.

So, I quickly informed her that I would contact her each night while I was away and do our bible study via FaceTime. We would coordinate it so that we would be alone while talking and complete our questions, challenge, and devotion together each night while I’m away.

She of course smiled, gave me a hug, and went to bed. That night as I laid in bed God used my daughter to show me how much He wants to spend time with me. Lord knows I felt convicted as I thought about all the times in the past where I was so busy doing God's work and not even spending time with God.

Its funny how we will use good things to excuse the fact that we are not spending time with God. Boy did I have a lot of excuses. God I’m speaking at this event, God I'm a CR Pastor and others need me, God I’m going to work at church, God I’m publishing, God I'm leading companies, God I’m coordinating a ministry, God I’m leading a retreat, God I’m going on a missions trip, God I’m working on my dissertation which involves resolving an issue regarding churches and Christian communities, God I’m travelling, God I’m doing this all to honor you. Do you see my pattern? As mentioned in each reason "I" did not spend time with God because my focus was not God, it was self.

Wow I never realized it, but I was telling God I don’t have time for you because I’m out here trying to honor and glorify you while focusing on self. How backwards is that?

I really took time that night to think about why I truly did this is the past. I discovered that I would somehow equate my deeds with my relationship with God. If I do more for God, then God will love me. If I do more for God, then He will listen to me when I need help. If I do more God might forgive me for my past.

Well there it was I was finally facing the truth I was running from God. I kept busy so that I could run from God, not to God. I preferred doing good deeds such as work that glorified God, hoping the result of my deeds would somehow translate to God giving me grace, mercy, and forgiveness. Yes I know that’s not how it works but just because I know better doesn’t mean I was doing it. I wonder if I’m the only that has done this?

There is a scripture that went straight to my heart when I read it. Jeremiah 2:32 Does a young woman forget her jewelry, a bride her wedding ornaments? Yet my people have forgotten me, days without number.

I forgot about the characteristics of God and used an excuse of serving HIM to do it. WOW what a reality check.

Well thank goodness we serve a forgiving God who allows us all to come and ask for forgiveness. Once I did this, I saw how much me and God's relationship was strained. I missed talking to God. I missed sharing my life with God.

Now I make time daily and not just with my daughter. I share my highs and my lows with God along with my frustrations and successes throughout my day. There is no longer a condition between our relationship as it was before. I also had to let go of a lot of the (God honoring) tasks I felt was priority so I could build my personal relationship with Him. Nothing and I mean nothing is more important than our relationship with God.

If you are experiencing the same issue as I once did, I would like to share something with you. I know how easy it is to say your too busy to take time out of your day for God. You may be a mom with kids and you just can’t catch a break. You might be a husband who works several hours, and you don’t have time outside of work and home. You may be a single mom struggling to make ends meet or a seasoned adult who has a routine you do not want to break. You may be a leader working in ministry striving to help others develop a relationship with God while sacrificing your own relationship.  No matter who you are God created you and desires a relationship with you. If it were not for God you wouldn’t exist. 

Ok ministry leaders and seminary students this part is for you. I know that’s a pretty hard truth pill to swallow especially for us ministry leaders and students. I encourage you no matter your title to try something different today and make time for God. Ministry leaders I’m not speaking about preparing for a sermon or a ministry event. Seminary students I’m not talking about studying the word to present an assignment either. Yes I already know what you were thinking she went there with it. Yes I did. How can we encourage others to develop an authentic relationship with God when we are not investing time into our own relationship with God? What example will be be for those following behind us?

So everyone no matter who you are, try waking up and talking to God 30 mins before you start your day. Sit in your car when you get home from work maybe an extra 10-15 mins and talk again to God. Talk to God at the laundry mat or on your lunch break at work. Take the time to read God’s word for yourself. God’s word is your  life manual so use it not just for others or on Sunday morning’s. Lastly, if you are a mature Christian God’s  word is your weapon so why are we choosing to show up to a war defenseless? 

Lets all try something different while building  the most important relationship we will ever have.


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