Making Time For God
We can all make time for God if we waste a little less. Steve uses the book Beginning to Pray by Metropolitan Anthony Bloom for hints at ways to make time for God. Transcript This week we’re going to talk about making time for God and this is inspired by the fourth chapter of the book Beginning to Pray (Affiliate Link) by Metropolitan Anthony Bloom. When I was a kid television stations actually went off the air at midnight or one am. Even some of the 12 cable channels we had; went off the air for a few hours each night. But, today I think every station has something on 24 hours a day. We live in a world that never stops. I think that’s why Time management is a big deal today. We spend hundreds of millions of dollars each year on time management From apps on our phones to the standard paper planner, (I use the bullet journal method) to classes costing thousands of dollars. Time management is a big business. The reality is that we can not make time. We only have what we have and once it is gone we can’t get it back. Instead of managing our time what Metropolitan Anthony asks us to do is waste a little less. He says if we waste a little less, we will always have more and we can use those once wasted pieces to draw closer to God. He also says, there is no way to grow our inner life in a hurry. Our relationship with God only comes from slowing down and making use of the time we are given. We can’t hurry enough to make more time. This is about taking time out of our busy schedule to be present with God. Ephesians 5:15-17 says Be careful then how you live, not as unwise people but as wise, making the most of the time, because the days are evil. So do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. Making the most of my time is where I like to make excuses. I don’t have time, I’m to busy, I’ll do it later. But I watch my wife, who is actually busy and realize I’m just making excuses. She works and takes college classes but makes time every morning for prayer, bible study, and journaling. She helps me see that if I really want a relationship with God, I can make the time. Think of spending time with God as our food or air. We wouldn’t refuse food or air if it were offered to us after a long absence so neither should we refuse to spend time with God if we honestly want to seek Him. Just like food and air, once we have spent time with God, we won’t want to do without it again. What can we do to Make Time for God? Have a Prayer Rule One of the best ways is the use of a prayer rule. A prayer rule helps us focus and stay on track with our prayers every day. It gives us a guided way to approach God instead of just showing up and trying to figure out what were going to do. It frees us to give in and just be present. I’ll do a whole episode on developing a prayer rule later but a short prayer rule would include when, where, how long, and what to pray for. In Orthodoxy, we have a set of daily prayers we should start with but the list is absolutely endless with prayer options. Practice Short Prayers Another way we can spend more time with God is by carving out short blocks of time during the day. Metropolitan Anthony says we can start with any amount of time we can get and just begin to sit quietly in God’s presence letting go of the “Cares of the world” and just being present with God. Since our minds are so cluttered with work, family, and life in general being silent for five minutes may seem like an hour. So being quiet for a couple of minutes at first is a great accomplishment. If sitting quietly isn’t your thing then try saying the Jesus prayer. “Lord Jesus Christ, son of God, have mercy on me a sinner. As you breathe in, say, “Lord Jesus Christ Son of God” and as you breathe out say, “Have mercy on me a sinner.” The Jesus Prayer has been practiced for centuries by everyone from monks to generals and everyone in between.