While most of us know that we should have times of personal devotion, we often simply don't know how.
We know that we need a time of personal and private time with our Lord and that we need the impact it will have on our lives, we still struggle to keep up to practice it.
Warning: We do not see the fruit of personal devotions, because we rush through them and do not have any expectations around them.
So lets learn this important principle about our Quiet Times: Always reflect.
Psalms 42:5 says: “Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Saviour and my God”.
The psalmist, suffering from a “soul that is downcast” in other words “depressed”, has a “talk with his depressed, sad soul”. My contemplation of what God has to say to me today, always should include a “talk with my soul”, in other words, reflection time, – even if I do not feel sad.
Whatever the day or the week requires of me, God needs to speak to my soul through his Word in one way or another and I need to make sure that I don't restrain the message by storing it only in my mind, yes, only dealing with it on an intellectual level.
It needs to reach my innermost self – the control centre of my emotions, values, dreams, plans, spirituality and expectations. I have to facilitate God speaking to my soul!
The danger is that it can become ego-centric: all about me and what I want and need. This is why the Psalmist’s talking to "his soul" is helpful.
It is a discussion that takes place about my life, but I participate in the third person, in the context of God's greatness, his Word, his will, his plan and his feelings, about me. I should talk to my soul in such a way that I ensure that the Lord is really talking to my soul, and therefore is truly talking to me.
After you asked God to help you before you engage with God through Word and Prayer, remember that you must always make time “to reflect”, to listen and to understand and believe what God wants to tell you.
Create space and time to talk to your soul, that God can speak to your soul too!