“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10
I would just like to repeat the end part of the previous blog before continuing. This is a story I shared of a guest who visited another church when I was a teenager, and the story struck a nerve with me:
Several years ago, I was in a church service where the worship was strongly on the go. Like everyone else, I was singing out my heart, and several other people were praying out loud in tongues or their mother tongue, while others were very busy reading the Bible declaring the Word of God out loud.
Suddenly, I saw Jesus Christ standing up front by the stage. But I was incredibly bothered when I saw his face was covered in tears and he was so sad, almost like as if his heart was broken. I saw him standing all alone and looking out over the crowd.
I was so bothered by what I saw, that I went up to him and asked, “Jesus, why are you so sad? Are you not happy by what we are doing?”
Jesus cried even more and through his tears he said, “My people sing about me, but no one sings to me, as if I’m not here, as if all the songs are meant for the audience and not me. My people are so busy asking and demanding and commanding, and chasing demons away in prayer, but none of them give me a few minutes to respond to their prayers and answer them. My people are so busy reading scripture, memorising and declaring them, but none of them waits to listen and hear what I have to say about my love letter. My Word has become head knowledge and the sword I entrusted to them is being used to cut other people to shreds. My people won’t allow me to show them my love in my Word.
When will my people become still, and give me a chance to speak? When will they listen and speak to me?”
Quiet time is all about two very simple things:
- having a conversation with God and
- becoming still and allowing God to talk and respond to our questions and words
This post will focus on the when of quiet time. I will answer the how in the follow-up post.
When is a good time to have quiet time?
That is a very good question.
According to scripture, early the morning tends to be the time when God and man converse with each other and all the life-changing things happen:
“What is man, that you make so much of him, and that you set your heart on him, visit him every morning and test him every moment?” Job 7:17-18
“And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool wind of the day, and the man and his wife (Adam and Eve) hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.” Genesis 3:8
“O Lord, in the morning you hear my voice; in the morning I prepare a sacrifice for you and watch.” Psalm 5:3
“God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved; God will help her when morning dawns. Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:5 and 10
“But I, O Lord, cry to you; in the morning my prayer comes before you.” Psalm 88:13
“Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.” Psalm 90:14
“Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love, for in you I trust. Make me know the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.” Psalm 143:8
“… Morning by morning he awakens; he awakens my ear to hear as those who are taught.” Isaiah 50:4
“In the morning, the word of the Lord came to me.” Ezekiel 12:8
“And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed.” Mark 1:35
“Early in the morning he came again to the temple. All the people came to him, and he sat down and taught them.” John 8:2
I hope you can see by the above verses how often it is recorded right throughout the Old and the New Testament that God met man in the early hours of the morning. And I haven’t even written down half of the scriptures referring to this time of day.
Another question often attached to time is “how long”. How long should I have quiet time?
I always say start at 10 minutes, if you have never taken time to wait on God, and become still. As you become more comfortable with the time, the stretch it by another 5 minutes. And keep doing this every few weeks.
Before you know it, 2 hours might not seem like enough time for quiet time – you want more time for you.
The Bible never mentions for how long each person had their time with God. I guess it’s like any other conversation you would have with your best friend – some days you both have lots and lots of things to share and discuss and consider and ponder, then there are those other days when 15 minutes is enough time to say what is need and nothing more.
What I do know is, that no more how much time is spent with God each and every single day, quiet time is something you look forward to. Just like when you look forward to hanging out with your best friend or boyfriend or girlfriend, that’s how excited one needs to be concerning quiet time with God.