When you first started dating your significant other (assuming you have one), you’d go anywhere at any time with them. Eventually, though, you probably both decided on a favorite place to hang out. Imagine if you made that your place to meet every single day at the exact same time, for half an hour or so, then when about your lives after that. That would get old really quick, wouldn’t it?
Unfortunately, many people treat their relationship with Jesus like that. They get in a routine (or more accurately, a rut) with Jesus. They meet with Him at the same, in the same place almost every day (unless they’re too busy or sleep in). Let’s be honest, that can get boring. Not for Jesus, but for you.
I talked with a guy the other day that found himself in a similar spot, where his relationship with Jesus didn’t feel real or exciting – it felt more like a religious ritual than a growing relationship.
My advice to him was to keep it fresh. Just like a human relationship would get boring doing the same thing at the same time every day, so can our relationship with Jesus. So, here are a few practical ways to keep things fresh with you and Jesus…
– Having a “normal” spot is ok, but be spontaneous every once in a while. Hang out with Him in a new spot: a park, a coffee shop, your back porch, or even a different part of the house. Today, instead of reading in my office, I read out in the living room by the Christmas tree – it was a nice change.
– Regardless of location, spending time with Jesus doesn’t have to look the same each day. Spend some days mainly praying, other days mainly reading, other days spend some time memorizing Scripture, etc. Keep it fresh.
– Remember that although you’re not omnipresent (present everywhere, at all times), God is. Your time with Jesus shouldn’t be tied down to just the 15 (or 30, or 60) minutes you get with Him in the morning. You can also chat in the car on your way to work, on your bike, board, or bus too!
– Jesus is also available in the afternoon and evening. “Devotional time” / “Quiet time” / “Chat with Jesus time” (or whatever you call it) gets pigeon-holed as a morning-only thing. It’s as if it’s not as effective or you’re not as holy if you hang out with Jesus later in the day. WRONG. If you’re not a morning person, be a night person and make it a point to hang out with Jesus later in the day.
– Read a different translation. I’ve read the Bible through a few times in the New King James Version, so lately in my time with the Lord, I’ve been reading the New Living Translation. It puts a new spin on some familiar passages that helps each day to feel fresh.
– Talk to Jesus like He’s real. He is real; so talk to Him like He is. If it helps, pull up a chair next to you, invite Him to sit down there, and talk to Him that way. He’s really listening and He really cares, so pray like it!
Those are a few things I do to keep things fresh between Jesus and I. What do you do?