I recently saw an app advertised online to help one with one’s prayer life. As I began reading with interest, I was troubled to discover that what it wanted to do was to teach the user how to squeeze prayer into their day in under ten minutes. This was necessary, it explained, because our days were so busy and we had so little time as it was, but oh yes, here’s a great way to fit a few minutes in to chat with God. While I appreciate any effort to draw another to prayer, my heart sank with sadness, as well as with some guilt over having spent more than several occasions rushing through prayers as I ran out the door, or just invited God to drive along with me so I could pray as I went about my plans and obligations. Hmmm… fitting God in.
Then tonight I read an article from the most recent issue of Just Thinking, the magazine of Ravi Zacharias International Ministries, where Ravi Zacharias wrote about the importance of our taking time to sit with God, prioritize/treasure time in His presence. He writes, “Can we do any less in the discipline of study and preparation to finish the task to which God has called us? The study of God is the highest science, the loftiest pursuit, and the mightiest discipline.”1 He then quotes another favorite author of mine, A. W. Tozer: “God has not bowed to our nervous haste nor embraced the methods of our machine age. It is well that we must accept the hard truth now: the man who would know God must give time to Him!” 2
Ravi Zacharias then ends by writing, “Might we sit still long enough to take in what God has for us for that is the greatest investment we will ever make.”3
I struggle with being a chronic over-doer and over-scheduler, and while more than ever I am drawn to know God deeper in my heart and soul, I find myself so exhausted and depleted that I am barely conscious as I seek God in prayer and the reading/study of His word. I have to ask myself, if Jesus Himself were physically present with me, would I fall asleep talking with Him? Would I relegate Him to the driver’s seat in my car on my way to an appointment to chat? Would I run out the door, waving to Him and saying, “Oh, I’ll catch you later when I have time?” Of course not… I would like to believe that, like Mary (Martha’s sister) I would drop everything and sit, mesmerized and completely focused at His feet, drinking in every second, every precious moment and syllable and teaching, staring up into His face with such intent that I could memorize every line on His face. Nothing else would matter.
May God forgive us for relegating Him into the spare moments and corners of our days, giving Him an audience when it’s convenient for us. May we fall face down in worship and lay our idolatrous calendars before Him, seeking Him first before all else, casting aside any hindrances might keep us from giving Him first place in our days, in our hearts, and in our lives.
1, 3 Ravi Zacharias, “Think Again: The Greatest Investment” Just Thinking – The Magazine of Ravi Zacharias International Ministries, Volume 24.4, August 2016
2 A. W. Tozer, “Give Time to God,” Reading for February 24 in Mornings with Tozer: Daily Devotional Readings (Chicago: Moody Publishers, 2015).