"There are two major reasons it is so difficult to develop the discipline of a daily quiet time. First is the influence of the flesh. Keep in mind that your old nature is opposed to daily quiet time... Pray that the Holy Spirit will enable your new nature to overcome your old nature in this battle.
"The second reason is resistance by Satan. The devil opposes your every effort to please Christ. His strategy is to rob you of daily quiet time joy, to complicate your time schedule by keeping you up late at night and making it hard for you to get up in the morning, to make you drowsy during your time with the Lord, to make your mind wander, and otherwise to disrupt your meeting with Christ. Ask the Holy Spirit to retain the devil."
- Greg Ogden, Discipleship Essentials, page 37
Before yesterday, I never really thought of our reluctance to spend daily quiet time with God as a part of greater spiritual warfare. It just sort of seemed like an "I-know-I-should-do-this-but-", passive, menial struggle. But this downplays the seriousness of our neglect, and the devil subtly chips away at us through this "passive, menial struggle."
Every student I ask about quiet time admits the same thing: they don't do it regularly. When I was in college, I also tended to shirk it in favor of memorizing lines, studying, and hanging out with friends. I always thought, "I'll have more time when I'm out of college." What happened? By the time I left college, I was barely a Christian, toying with declarations of Agnosticism or even Atheism.
What I tell my students: It never gets easier.
In fact, it will probably get harder.
Yesterday, I decided it's time to stop treating this spiritual discipline as something that would be "nice" to accomplish and start treating it as something vital for life. Jesus tells us in John 15 to abide or remain in Him and the Word. If we don't, we won't grow--we won't be nourished--we will bear no fruit. In fact, if we don't abide with him, we will wither, be cut off, and thrown into the fire.
Hellooooo! This is serious!
Why are we NOT taking it seriously?
What I challenged to my students yesterday--and my challenge to YOU--is to take out your calendar before you go to bed tonight. Literally schedule in at least 10 minutes of quiet time with God daily for the next week. If you miss a day, then just start again the next day. I'm going to check in with them next Wednesday. Find someone you can check in with and keep you accountable.
So I'm done with being passive. I'm done letting the devil have this victory over my life, and the lives of the women I mentor. It's over, Satan. The Lord has the victory.
"With God we will gain the victory, and he will trample down our enemies."
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