Fellowship with God is matured by spending time with Him.
HYMN: OH, FOR A CLOSER WALK WITH GOD
TEXT: Gen. 19:27; Luke 6:12-13, 11:1-4, Psalm 63:1-6
God wants to speak to us about the plan He has for our lives. His plan is a good one, but we are in danger of missing it if we don’t learn how to listen to and obey God’s voice.
If we want to be led into victory by the Spirit of God, then we have to be willing to change our lifestyle as God speaks to us. The first change we may encounter is the need to create an atmosphere that is conductive to hearing from God. By this, we mean the environment, or predominant mood that surrounds us. Atmosphere is created by attitudes, and certain attitudes enhance or hinder our relationship with God. To enjoy the fulness of God’s presence we must consistently maintain an atmosphere conductive to seeking Him, honoring Him and being faithful and obedient to Him.
Christians over the years have learned that certain disciplines and practices help them keep the spiritual channels open and keep the heart tuned toward God. These disciplines can’t save you; they can’t even make you a holy person. But they can heighten your desire, awareness and love of God by stripping down the barriers that you put up within yourself and some that others put up for you. Hence, the need for “Quiet Time” in the life of a believer.
When practiced faithfully and regularly, as a habit or regular pattern in your life, it brings you back to God and opens you up to God.
The objectives of this study are:
1. To define quiet time.
2. To mention the purpose of quiet time.
3. To state the requirements of a meaningful quite time.
4. To highlight the benefits of quiet time.
Q1. WHAT IS QUIET TIME?
Quiet time is a Christians’ ‘best time’ he or she set out in a day to fellowship with God. It is a spiritual discipline when practiced faithfully or regularly; it enhances a Christian’s relationship with God. It is a devotional practice that is traceable to the Lord Jesus Christ, as found in the New Testament, Luke 6:12, 11:1.
Quiet time is a time when you are at your best to hear from God and also speak to God. This special time can become the anchor points of your life, a time when you ‘drive a stake’ as a landmark and go on from there. Your daily quiet time is more effective as you pray into day to day reality some of the things the Lord speaks to your heart in protracted times of prayers. The quiet time in turn is the foundation for ‘praying without ceasing’, going through the day in communion with God.
Q2. DISCUSS THE PURPOSE OF QUIET TIME UNDER THE FOLLOWING HEADINGS:
A. Fellowship: 1 John 1:3
Quiet time encourages an extended fellowship with God beyond the normal worship. It means being with and thinking about God, who has called us into the fellowship of His son, Jesus Christ, 1 Cor. 1:9. Like many personal relationships, this fellowship is nurtured by spending time together. God takes special note of times His people reverence Him and think upon His name, Malachi 3:16.
B. Strength for the day: Psalm 27:1-6
A time with God both in prayers and in meditation of His word gives strength for the day, especially when done in the early hours of each day; we need this perspective to sharpen our vision of the unseen, and to let the immediate, tangible things drop into proper place. Our spiritual defenses are strengthened while “we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For…what is unseen is eternal”, 2 Cor. 4:18.
C. To hear from God: Psalm 27:1-6
Listening is an important key to hearing. God doesn’t bother to speak to closed ears. If we are not going to listen to Him, God will find someone with a ready ear, who is listening for the sound of His voice. God wants to speak to us on a regular basis. We need to have a listening ear all the time. Our flesh is so susceptible and our day so congested with activities that it is difficult for us to be still enough to hear God. Therefore, a quiet time becomes very necessary.
D. Bible study: Psalm 119:9-16
At quiet time, we read and meditate on a section of the scripture. This is where conversation with God begins. He speaks through His word and we speak with Him in prayers. So, ensure that you meditate on the word of God during quiet time. Prayer at quiet time should be directed by the Holy Spirit, affected by the prevailing situations and the revelation of God’s word.
Q3. WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS FOR A MEANINGFUL QUIET TIME? Mark 1:35; Matt. 6:6, 14:23; Deut. 6:1-10
To have a meaningful quiet time, you will need a plan or some kind of general outline to follow. The main rule is to keep your plan simple, but be guided by the Holy Spirit. The following may assist the planned quiet time:
A. Specific time:
The specific time has to do with when you should have your quiet time and how long it should be. The general rule is this: The best time is when you are at your best. Give God the best part of your day when you are the freshest and most alert. Don’t try to serve God with your leftovers (leftovers time). Remember too what your best time may be different from someone else’s. For most of us however, early in the morning seems to be the best time. It was Jesus own practice to rise early to pray and meet with the Father. “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where He prayed”, Mark 1:35. In the Bible many godly men and women rose early to meet with God. Some of these were:
-Abraham (Genesis 19:27)
-Job (Job 1:5)
-Jacob (Genesis 28:18)
-Moses (Exodus 34:4)
-Hannah & Elkanah
(1 Samuel 1:19
-David (Psalm 5:3, 57:7-8)
Whatever time you set, be consistent in it. Schedule it on your calendar; make an appointment with God and keep it.
B. Choose a special place:
The location where you have your quiet time is also important. The Bible indicates that Abraham had regular place where he met with God, Genesis 19:27. Jesus had a custom of praying in the Garden of Gethsemane on the Mount of Olives. “Jesus went out as usual to the Mount of Olives and His disciples followed Him”, Luke 22:39. The place ought to be secluded. This is a place where
you can be alone, where it is quiet and where you will not be disturbed or interrupted. In today’s noisy world, this may take some ingenuity, but it is necessary. It ought to be a place, where:
-One can pray aloud without disturbing others
-There is good lighting for reading.
C. A Bible, a contemporary translation.
D. A notebook, for writing down what the Lord shows you and for making a prayer list.
E. A hymn book, sometimes you may want to sing in your praise time, Colossians 3:16.
Q4. WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF EFFECTIVE QUIET TIME?
The benefits of quiet time to a Christian cannot be overemphasized.
- Enhancement of close fellowship with God;
- Giving a leading and direction into the day’s activity;
- Creating boldness and faith to face any challenge of the day;
- Helping the Christian to present himself cleansed before God;
- Re-enacting the consciousness of the coming of Christ.
DAILY LIVING APPLICATION
The believer must realize that he’s engaged in a spiritual battle and can only succeed by the power of the Holy Spirit. So, pray that God will strengthen you and depend on Him to help you develop an effective quite time to His glory. Moreover, a close relationship with God should be developed by fellowshipping with Him regularly. We were created to have fellowship with God, so we should spend time each day meeting with Him.
“But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut the door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly”.
DAILY DEVOTIONAL GUIDE
Monday: Wait on the Lord.
Tuesday: He hears my voice.
Psalm 116:1-2, 17
Wednesday: Reverence in quiet time.
Habakkuk 2:20; Psalm 89:7
Thursday: Willingness to obey at quiet time.
Friday: Keep a listening attitude.
Saturday: God talks to His people.