How to Have a Quiet Time
“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:13
The heart of David was aflame with passionate zeal for his Lord. He thirsted for God as a man stranded in a parched desert would thirst for a few drops of cool water. Listen to the cry of David’s heart: “O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where there is no water”. (Ps 63:1)
Jesus’ life was also characterised by earnest devotion to His father. “And in the morning, a great while before day, he rose and went out to a lonely place, and there he prayed” (Mk1:35). The Son of God realised the utmost importance of daily fellowship alone with God and made it His number one priority.
Quiet time refers to the time we spend alone with God to seek Him through the Word and prayer. The Bible calls it “preparation of the heart.” It is to develop our relationship with the Lord and prepare us to live each day to the maximum. God’s Word exhorts us to a daily time of preparing our hearts to serve Him effectively (2 Chron 12:14; 19:3; 20:33; 27:6). The following principles help to guide us in an effective quiet time. They are flexible and can aid you in developing your personal quiet time.
8 principles for effective quiet times
1. Wait on God
“Be still, and know that I am God…” (Ps 46:10) Quiet your thoughts as you enter into God’s presence with reverence and awe. Wait on God – worship or reading a Psalm can help you focus on God if you’re finding yourself being distracted.
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9) Allow the Holy Spirit time to convict you of any unconfessed sin, then immediately ask forgiveness of your Father. Repentance is essential to hear from God. (Ps 51:10-13; Rom 6:1-23; Heb 12:1-11).
3. Submit to the Lordship of Jesus Christ
“Submit yourselves, then, to God” (Jam 4:7). Yield yourself to the lordship of Christ and ask Him to fill you with His Holy Spirit (2 Chron. 30:8-9; Eph 5:18).
4. Read God’s Word
“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path” (Ps 119:105). Remain sensitive to the Holy Spirit to reveal fresh insights from the Word for your personal application.
5. Put on the armour of God
“Put on the full armour of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes” (Eph 6:11). We as Christians are in a spiritual battle, so it is important that we heed Paul’s exhortation to “put on the full armour”.
6. Resist the enemy
“Resist the devil and he will flee from you” (Jam 4:7). Deal aggressively with Satan in Jesus’ name. Exercise the authority you have through His name, His shed blood, and the Word of God (Lk10:19; 1 Jn4:4; Rev 12:11). Resist wandering thoughts, lies, condemnations, and distractions.
Bring the issues that are on your heart to the Lord and allow God to minister to you. (Prov 3:6)
8. Commit the day to the Lord
“Commit your way to the Lord; trust in Him and He will do this…” (Ps 37:5) God created us to have fellowship with Him; time alone with Him should be a priority every day. If we neglect our quiet time, we not only deprive ourselves of His precious fellowship. Consider this from Robert Boyd Munger’s booklet, My Heart- Christ’s Home. As he walks with the Lord through his home, they enter one special room, the drawing room.
This article is an excerpt from our YWAM Perth staff handbook, adapted to fit the formatting of this website.