Making time for God is essential and important to our spiritual lives and self growth. When we take time to be alone with God, we allow the presence of the Lord to enter and speak to our hearts. Our minds can become clear when we take what’s been burdening us down and present it to God. Only He can handle all of our problems.
“Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” (1 Peter 5:7 NLT)
Lately I’ve been having a tough time sleeping. What used to be a slightly comfortable bed has now become an uncomfortable pit of fabric, fluff and springs. I’m constantly tossing and turning, waking up every two to three hours after going to sleep. For a week, each night appears to be the same never-ending cycle. I’ll go to bed at a particular hour and about three hours later, I’m wide awake. Through burning pupils, I pick up my phone, often times turning directly to the Word of God, while a few times I’ll open up Instagram or iTunes hoping that the music or inspirational videos will put me back to sleep.
This morning, however, it dawned on me — God must be trying to tell me something. Often times we think we put ourselves to sleep and wake our own selves up but in actuality, this is furthest from the truth. We have no real power to do this, only God has all the power. He’s the one that causes us to rest and awaken from a dead sleep. So if we’re waking up at weird hours of the night / morning, it’s because God is trying to talk to us.
So how do you listen when God speaks?
“For God speaks again and again, though people do not recognize it. He speaks in dreams, in visions of the night, when deep sleep falls on people as they lie in their beds. He whispers in their ears and terrifies them with warnings. He makes them turn from doing wrong; he keeps them from pride. He protects them from the grave, from crossing over the river of death.”
(Job 33:14-18 NLT)
Many times, God speaks to us in our dreams. Other times, He’ll awaken us from our dreams and speak to us directly. I’ve experienced both. Lately, my dreams have been clouded by nightmares. I’ll be sleeping peacefully when suddenly I’m in a strange place being attacked by a serpent. Each nightmare will play solely on temptations of sin and fear. Unfortunately, the enemy never sleeps. He’ll use anything to try to spoil our peace. Knowing that I’m in a constant state of prayer, praise, reading and studying of God’s word leaves the enemy trying other ways to disrupt and disturb me. Since he can no longer affect me during the day, he tries to penetrate my sleep and infect me at night.
“The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.” (John 10:10 NLT)
“The murderer rises in the early dawn to kill the poor and needy; at night he is a thief.” (Job 24:14 NLT)
Thanks be unto God for hearing my cries in my sleep and waking me up to His rescuing arms, allowing me to spend quality time with Him. It’s not easy having broken sleep; however, I much rather be awake with The Lord than to be devoured by Satan.
Today, as always, I share my story in hopes that it implores you to spend time with God. We can always call on Him when we need help but sometimes it’s God who calls on us. Identify when He’s calling you to have some alone time with Him. I understand it can seem difficult to turn away from the technology and distractions of the world or to wake up starting your day with reading the Word, but it’s a necessity that everyone must adopt. Diving into His Word is beneficial for your life. God’s calling may not seem convenient for you, but we must remember: our time is not our time. It’s for God alone. It’s our duty to make Him our priority. Just as we want Him to listen to us, hear our cries, grant us our dreams / desires and save us from the hands of the enemy, He requires a sacrifice of our time in return.
That’s why the saying goes: “Time is precious and more valuable than anything.” We all need to hear what The Lord has to say. It’s the most important conversation to have every day of your life. Speaking with the Lord doesn’t have to be scary nor complicated. Our conversation can be the same things we would talk to our friends or loved ones about. Some conversations can be deep while others can be light and require just a simple, “Thank you God.” He just wants to hear from us. God enjoys checking in on us to see how we are doing, rescuing us from the traps of the enemy when we call on His name, alerting us to things we need to change, evolving us into better versions of ourselves, as well as giving us hope, a vision, goal or plan for our current and future lives.
““But if an angel from heaven appears— a special messenger to intercede for a person and declare that he is upright— he will be gracious and say, ‘Rescue him from the grave, for I have found a ransom for his life.’ Then his body will become as healthy as a child’s, firm and youthful again. When he prays to God, he will be accepted. And God will receive him with joy and restore him to good standing.” (Job 33:23-26 NLT)
“But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”” (Matthew 4:4 NLT)
I pray today that you take time out for God. May He speak to you and reveal any hidden issues, messages or thoughts He has for you. May you be able to receive the Holy Spirit of discernment and recognize His voice alone. I pray that any of your prayers / questions you ask God be answered. May He grant you clarity for anything that doesn’t seem clear. May you receive a sense of peace and rest in His Word. In Jesus name, I ask all these things be counted done, Amen.
Sincerely with love,
Travel photography by IG user: @golden_heart