I looked at the Bible with new eyes the day I entered into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. The same words I’d muddled through, now came alive. I couldn’t get enough! For hours I would sit and read as if I’d never read any of it before.
When I met Barb Choat, she challenged me, saying, “This is great Deb. But what will you do during midterm exams? Or after you get a job? Will you still take time for the Word? Or will you start to think, ‘I don’t have an hour today,’ then end up skipping it? How much better it is to develop the discipline of taking one bite, chewing on it, and seeking to live it out every single day of your life. You can always read more later. A little dose daily will get you farther in the long run.”
Thus began my adventure with shared quiet times. Right then and there Barb sat down, opened her Bible and gave me one of the best gifts I ever received!
Transformational Quiet Times
Now there are many different ways to have a quiet time. Indeed, the words “quiet time” seem to be a catch-all for just about any activity: reading through the Bible, praying, or simply sitting quietly and listening. All of these activities are valuable, but what Barb shared with me is transforming my life more than any other spiritual discipline.
Basically there are three components. I refer to them as: Look, Listen, and Live It Out. Barb began by showing me her quiet time from the previous day so I could see this format, and then we dove in! We started together and finished together, but each completed most of it on our own with Jesus. As a result, I knew exactly what to do the next day. This also made it easy to share with another friend.
First we prayed, asking the Lord to open our eyes so we could see wonderful things in His word and cried out to him for wisdom (James 1:5). We asked him to show us where he wanted us to focus. Next, we started reading aloud through Psalm 1 and stopped when a verse stood out to me.
Then, we each wrote our verse at the top of a page, and separately began to record whatever thoughts came to mind. I remember writing observations, pondering the meanings of different words, and asking God questions. Was I ever surprised when I wrote down what came to mind and He took me in a direction I never expected!
LIVE IT OUT! (apply)
Next, (still individually) we asked the Lord: What do you want me to do in response to what I’ve just read? How do you want this lived out? What difference will knowing this make in my life? Then, we took time to share with each other the verse we selected, our best thoughts on it, and applications. We had a brief discussion about how we could help hold each other accountable. We concluded by praying for each other, especially asking for help to complete our applications.
Twenty-six years later, I’m still doing this with others!
Want to teach someone how to have a quiet time? Check out these resources you might find helpful in sharing a quiet time with someone.