Monday, April 23, 2012

Discipline Challenge: Week 3

Wow, it is hard to believe that we are on week three of the challenge already! If you are just now joining me, I have been blogging about discipline along with Courtney from Women Living Well. The first week was about the body and the second was time. For the first challenge, my goal was to get moving more. I have been doing better at this but need to schedule more actual time for working out. Though I did go for a nice long walk with my husband one day last week, it ended up being almost five miles! For the second challenge, my goal was to make God time a priority, as I was convicted that I had been falling short in this area. I have been doing better with this and am feeling more accomplished in my daily tasks as well now that I am trying to adjust my focus to be on God first.

This week the challenge is about the spirit. Courtney mentions that we need to be tenacious in our walk with God. This means that we must persistently seek and cling to him. Does this mean that you must spend every waking hour pouring through the bible and praying? No it doesn't. If all that is all that you did, you would surely be neglecting other responsibilities. However, if you do not take time to read your bible and pray then you are neglecting your spiritual growth and relationship with the Lord. This is why is it important to make these a priority. I know it is easy to get hung up on the details like how to pray or what to read but those are just excuses. I made those excuses for years and my spiritual life suffered for it. I read this post by Gina from Keepin' It real the other day. I like how she poignantly addresses more excuses that we often make about spending time with God. Excuses like:

~"I'm not a morning person. It's too hard to get out of bed to be in the Word."
~"I'm too tired at night to be in the Word. It's just not effective!" 
~"I don't want to do it just because someone tells me I have to."  
~"I don't want to do it if my heart isn't in it."

What we must realize is that it takes discipline to make God our first priority. It will not always be easy but we need to do it. We cannot not know God without spending time in the word and in prayer. Think about it this way: Would you feel close to your husband if he hardly ever talked to you and didn't care to make time to spend together? I have a hard time believing anyone could say yes to that so why do we expect that we can be close to God without ever opening a bible or talking to him through prayer?

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 So for the challenge this week we are seeking to strengthen our spirit by spending time with God before anything else. Here's the challenge from Courtney:

Purpose to not read ANYTHING else before you have read God’s word for at least 1 minute in the morning Do not read the newspaper, facebook, a spiritual devotional  or check your email.  Go straight to God’s word first.  And in case you think 1 minute seems a bit stingy with our time – I want to suggest – that once you get started most likely you will go for much longer than 1 minute.  But I want this to be doable.  After reading your Bible, I encourage you to leave your Bible in the kitchen open and every time you walk past it, pause to read it for 15 seconds and then go on.  Squeeze all the nourishment you can out of the scriptures you are reading. 

 This weeks challenge is pretty straightforward. As opposed to the others, where you set a personal goal this one is simply to spend time in the word for at least one minute before reading anything else. This will be a great way for me to continue my challenge from last week to make God time a priority.

I know that last week I mentioned about my home management and organization tips. I'm still planning on posting about that, hopefully sometime this week.



1 comment:

  1. This is so GOOD Ashley! I'm encouraged by the ways you will put God first. "Quiet Time" is what I call my time with the Lord and is such a necessary way for me to start the day. I can't function without meeting with Jesus!

    Carly @