Quiet Time

I shared the other week that I find it most helpful to wake up earlier than my family and making sure to begin my day with quiet time. That post has led to some folks asking what resources I like to use and how I do my quiet time. So I thought I’d share today!

I’ll begin with opening Shauna Niequist devotional Savor: Living Abundantly Where You Are, As You Are to see what the selected passage of the day is:

Next I’ll read the entire chapter for the selected passage of scripture in my bible. As I go along, I highlight any passages that my “jump” out to me. I try not to analyze or evaluate the passage that sticks out to me, but follow where the spirit leads.

    

Now I return back to my devotional book to read what thoughts the writer (Shauna in this case) has to say about the piece of scripture I just read. Then I take some time to reflect on the verses of scripture I highlighted in my Bible and what the devotional had to say. Some mornings this can look like me sitting in quiet meditation and prayer. Other mornings, like my ideal morning, I’ll take the time to write out the verses I highlighted and my prayer for the day.

  
No matter what happens with my time constraints for a  given morning, my focus is first on reading the bible, then considering thoughts of a devotional writer. I find that devotionals are a great start for quiet time for me to know what to read, and provide variety so I’m not reading straight through the bible. I will admit that I’m fairly particular about the devotionals I use because some writers like to cherry pick scripture, aka pick scripture that fits what they’re trying to say, but the verse may not mean what they think. I do recognize that many devotionals are written by folks with no theological training, so their writing comes from the heart, not necessarily from a scholarly perspective. But the Bible scholar in me dies a little inside when I see this happen and I turn away from what could have been a great resource.
I will admit it’s hard for me to find a daily devotional written by a biblical scholar of the Old and New testament that provides the reflective imagery I personally desire. I will  accept what I can get and have have found three favorite devotionals to this day:

  1. Savor: Living Abundantly Where You Are, As You Are by Shauna Niequist
  2. Streams in the Desert by L.B. Cowman
  3. My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers

How do you spend your quiet time?

Please note there are some affiliate links in this post. As always, I only link to products I trust and use!

Dear Working Mama

Dear Working Mama,

You are balancing a lot, and the pressure to get it all done can feel insurmountable. It may seem that all the other mamas out there are getting  it all done and still managing to look put together. I can’t speak for everyone else, but looks can be deceiving. I’ve said it before, but the to do list is never quite done and something has to give. Over time I have learned that there are two important things that help me get through it all and maintain my sanity.

The first thing I need more than anything is waking up before my family. As much as I’d love to sleep in or stay in bed reading, it’s not what helps me get my day going smoothly. Ideally I should wake up 30 to 60 minutes before my family, and most days it’s unfortunately closer to 30. Having that time to myself to get ready without my daughter pulling on me or “helping” me get ready is almost magical. It’s a great feeling to be ready for the day before my husband or daughter begin to stir. Any curves that may come my way are now much easier to dodge.


Next and most important thing I need is grace. Grace that I give myself and above all the grace of God. Each and every day I can be so hard on myself, but I remind myself that I’m loved and forgiven. This reminder is easier to find when I take time to read scripture and pray to start my day. It’s really easy to not make time for God, but when I do my day goes SO MUCH SMOOTHER. Lately, I even spend this quiet time win God before doing my make-up. I know that sounds crazy, but that time has become crucial for me.
What makes your day go by smoother may be different, but these two things have been game changers for me. You might not be able to do it all, but take time to figure out what will sustain you through what you can get done. I hope that no matter what you do give yourself grace.

Love,

A mama paddling along next to you

 

This post is part of a blog hop from Blogs & Business. Check out some of the other awesome blogs participating:

The Art of Better | Being Mrs. Beer | Women Winning Online | Mommy My Way | xo -Ava | Kori at Home | Ma Bell Vie | Stellar Mama The Jessie K | Make & Do Crew | This Kenyan Traveler | Blue Eyed Babies | HebrewDawn | Leah With Love | Fighting for Fitness | Tot Tot Goose | Nurture Her Nature | Blogihealth | A Cotton Kandi Life | The Bipolar Mama | Simple Acres | Dawn P Darnell | A Kreative Whim | Scarlett Ballantyne | My Unfiltered Chaos | The Big Red Patch House | The Mother Blog | Diary of a New Mommy