Three weeks into the new year, your big plans for regular devotional time might already have unraveled. It happens to you. It happens to me. It happens to all of us. We make good, detailed plans. Then those plans slip away from us.
Most years, I end up needing a quiet-time reset–a renewed plan to carry forward after the new year buzz wears off. If you need the same, I offer you a simple option to consider.
I find it helpful to order my quiet time around a 3-part plan–READ, PRAY, STUDY–using a general, 1-hour time frame to keep me focused. You may think it cold or legalistic to use a timer to structure your Bible reading, but I assure you it’s not. Establishing a baseline time commitment can help us develop a consistent, habitual plan which bears fruit. And we can always linger longer in these daily spiritual disciplines, whenever possible.
BASIC QUIET TIME PLAN
(Pray for God to bless your devotion to God’s Word.)
1. READ the Bible for 25 minutes.
– Any Bible reading plan will work well. If you’re using a yearly plan, a daily 25-minute session of Bible reading will carry you beyond the assigned reading. Almost without realizing it, you will read the end of the Bible in less than 6 months. Whoa! Now, you’re reading the Bible twice a year.
2. PRAY for 10 minutes.
– Ten minutes of prayer is longer than you think, and it’s likely longer than you’re praying now. But we still need a plan to order and focus our prayers. I like this one. And, remember, you can always pray longer. Don’t let anyone tell you different: 10 minutes per day is a good start.
3. STUDY a small passage of the Bible for 25 minutes.
– Pick a book of the Bible which you’d like to study. Buy a good, pastoral commentary. I’ve always had good experiences with The Bible Speaks Today series. Highly readable; clear truth; practical application.
– Daily read/study a couple verses of the Bible book you’re studying and the corresponding section of the commentary.
– Note some key truths and application to your life.
BOOM! That’s it! You have a hearty and doable quiet time plan, spending 1 hour each day. Works well for me! Might work well for you!