This Devotional is part of our “Can’t Quarantine the Gospel” series where members of the church are contributing morning Quiet times during this time of Social Distancing. This is Day 8 of that series. Any of the Devotionals can be read as a stand alone quiet time. You can see more devotionals here
Redefining our Devotion to God
By: Stepfan Jones
As we face these challenging times it provides us with an opportunity to connect with God’s goodness through devotion. Devotion is all about the heart, it’s things that we do to help us draw closer to God in our love for him. It is crucial that we continue to stay connected to God as the world around us gives into fear and chaos. I know for me this time can be very scary as well and I can hyper focus on wanting to ensure that I am taking care of my family and that we have what we need, but right now we can also show God’s goodness to other souls who are just as scared as we may be. This is a chance to slow down, be still at times and think about how we can redefine our devotion to God. So how do we think we can redefine our devotion to God to help us connect with His goodness?
“Sing joyfully to the Lord, you righteous; it is fitting for the upright to praise him. Praise the Lord with the harp; make music to him on the ten-stringed lyre. Sing to him a new song; play skillfully, and shout for joy. For the word of the Lord is right and true; he is faithful in all he does.The Lord loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love. By the word of the Lord the heavens were made, their starry host by the breath of his mouth. He gathers the waters of the sea into jars; he puts the deep into storehouses. Let all the earth fear the Lord; let all the people of the world revere him. For he spoke, and it came to be; he commanded, and it stood firm.”
When I read the Psalms I feel as though the different psalmists have redefined what devotion to God looks like. Reading through the Psalms is where I go when I want to grow in my devotion to God. When I read the Psalms and pray, I notice that the way I pray changes. It really helps me redefine my prayers to God. It helps me connect to God in a deeper way. Redefining and adapting our devotion and our love for God starts with redefining our prayer life based on where we really are right now and where we are right now changes from day to day. We have to allow our prayer life to evolve as we do and as our relationship with God does as well. This involves understanding the ways we wan’t God to move our hearts now and being good listeners of God’s answers.
Q: What have you learned about prayer from reading the Psalmists?
Q: What has been going on in lately in your heart? What is new or different?
Reflect: How has your relationship with God changed since first becoming a Christian?
Think about relationships without God as the center. When statements like “I fell out of love” happen, it’s often because what it meant to be “devoted to one another” was never redefined, was never adjusted as they grew and changed. When couples don’t redefine their devotion to one another as they grow, they inevitably will fall out of love. Redefining our devotion is about a desire to keep falling back in love. We must redefine our devotion in our relationships with each other to stay “ in love” and we have to do the same thing with God. If we’re not changing up our devotion with God, we too will make that grave mistake of falling out of love with God. How we experience God’s goodness is through striving to keep falling in love with him and renewing our vows to him.
Reflect on the following passages:
“he put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the lord and put their trust in him.” Psalm 40:3
“Send me your light and your faithful care, let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell. Then I will go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and my delight. I will praise you with the lyre, O God, my God.” Psalm 43:3-4
“With my lips I recount all the laws that come from your mouth. I rejoice in following your statutes as one rejoices in great riches. I meditate on your precepts and consider your ways. I delight in your decrees; I will not neglect your word.” Psalm 119:13-16
“for I delight in your commands because I love them. I reach out for your commands, which I love, that I may meditate on your decrees.” Psalm 119:47-48
In our devotion to God we ought to kick it up a notch! We have to sing new songs, pray new prayers, and explore new ways to love him. If the things we are doing are not helping us connect to God’s goodness or we no longer delight in the ways we are going about connecting to God it is time to redefine our devotion.
A few question to evaluate if it’s time to redefine your devotion to God:
- Have I been enjoying my time in God’s word lately?
- Have I been leaving my time of prayer feeling strengthened by God and closer to Him?
- Do I feel inspired to share with others about why I love Christ?
- Do my family devotionals help my family feel more connected to God?
Connecting to God’s goodness comes from being able to leave our times with God feeling closer to Him rather than just “doing our duty” to talk to Him. This challenges me a ton, because there are days when I feel like I’m doing it just to do it and it becomes routine.
Routine is not a bad thing, but we have to be careful that we are not just carrying out tasks without connecting to the things we are doing. This happens when we forget to seek out God’s goodness through personal devotion.
Q: When do you feel closest to God and his goodness?
Q: What are the things that I do now to help me draw closer to God?
Q: Are the things I’m doing now helping me connect to God’s goodness? If not how can I go about changing that?
Challenge: Think of one a fresh way to connect with God this week, if you can’t think of anything this is the perfect opportunity to ask a friend for suggestions.