But if you stay joined to me and my words remain in you, you may ask any request you like, and it will be granted! (John 15:7)
Can you believe that we are more than half way through this series? When I first committed to this, I did not think I could blog every day, without missing. Afterall, I am a 2 or 3 day a week blogger, certainly not 7. But so far, with the exception of one very timely re-post, I’ve done it! I want to thank you all for stopping by and leaving your lovely comments for me on this series. To know that what I write resonates in the hearts of so many has blessed me more than you could know.
We’ve talked a lot in this series about the importance of “abiding”. The reality is, so many of us are struggling with quieting our minds, bodies and emotions long enough to sit still in His presence. But we are making strides. It’s important that we continue practicing His presence until we gain the discipline of a focused life.
This week, I would like to share with you some tools that I find helpful during my quiet times with the Lord. I hope that you will also find them helpful as you seek to abide in His presence.
Pray-Read the Scripture
When I read my Bible, I often pray God’s Word back to Him. (I would like this to happen every time, but let’s be real. It just doesn’t.) There is something so powerful about praying God’s Word and His promises back to Him. Not that He needs reminding. But just to hear His Words being spoken back to Him helps to build my faith, and it also helps me to “hide His Word in my heart”. This is especially important for an auditory learner like myself.
When we read His Word, we encounter two broad categories of scriptural truth. First, truths that exhort you to believe God and secondly, truths that exhort you to obey Him.
When you come to truths EXHORTING YOU TO BELIEVE:
- Thank Jesus for the reality represented in the specific passage being read.
For example, when the Lord says in Song 4:9, “You have ravished My heart, My sister, My Bride,” then respond by simply asking Him for this truth. Be patient and speak slowly in your heart to God. You might be surprised how the Holy Spirit will, on occasions, tenderize your heart by such simple declarations of thanksgiving.
- Ask Jesus to reveal in a greater way the specific passage being read.
For example, when the Lord says in Song 4:9, “You have ravished My heart, My sister, My Bride” then respond by asking Him for greater heart revelation of this truth. Be persistent in asking Him to open the eyes of your heart as Paul prayed in Eph. 1:17-18. The Holy Spirit will cause your insight to gradually increase.
When you come to truths EXHORTING YOU TO OBEY:
- Commit yourself to obey what that specific passage describes.
For example, when the Lord exhorts the Bride in Song 2:10 to arise to follow Him to the mountains, leaving the comfort zone behind, take time to specifically declare the intent of your heart to fully obey this truth. These sweet resolutions to fully obey a scriptural passage will cause strength of obedience to grow in time.
- Ask the Lord to empower you to obey what that specific passage describes.
For example, when the Lord exhorts the Bride in Song 2:10 to arise to follow Him to the mountains, leaving the comfort zone behind, take time to specifically ask the Lord to empower your heart to obey this passage. Such requests for divine help to obey will result in a growth in grace over time.
Be sure to record your thoughts (meditations) as you “pray-read” as just described. Take time to journal by writing down the prayers and the ideas that come to you.
*This is Day 17 of a 31 day series on “Abiding”. You can find all of my posts in this series here. And be sure to stop by some of the other 31Dayers. Over 700 bloggers have linked up so far! There is something for everyone!