Soul Food

Is Spending Time with God a Priority In Your Life?

It’s 6:30am and my husband nudges me gently as he whispers quietly, “Good Morning.” (He knows I can be a beast if not approached with caution). My eyes slowly peer open and I need to get up, but the coziness and warmth of the comfy quilt pulled tightly to my chin causes me to whisper back, “Just ten more minutes”. He claims I am the “cutest thing” in the morning (which I try to work this to my advantage), therefore doesn’t argue as he says, “Okay. Ten more minutes.”

We all know how “just ten more minutes” usually turns out, but I’ll go ahead and tell you what happens in our household. The “ten minutes” turns into 15. And then sometimes 30. But in most cases, for me at least, it turns into 40 minutes. I know! I know! For those of you have to get up for work, you are thinking, “WOW! It must be awful to have the life of a stay at home wife (insert eye roll).” And I get it. I will accept all the eye rolls because I truly can’t complain.

But back to my story…

It’s 7:10ish by the time I stumble out of bed, grab my cup of coffee, and head to my office in the spare bedroom to spend the first minutes of my day with Poppa God. But as I sit down and check the time, I realize that my “snoozing” has left me with less than 30 minutes before Princess “Paul” (that’s what she calls herself) wakes up from her slumber (you can read here why we have a princess staying with us). But before “getting started”, I decide to check my email “just real fast”. What’s a few minutes, right? But friends, just like “just ten more minutes” turns into more than what you anticipated, so does checking one’s email. Because in checking my email, I somehow found myself reading a few blog posts, and the next thing I knew, I had found myself in the black hole I call Facebook. And the next thing after that? I had found myself scrolling my newsfeed, “liking” pictures and reading pointless status updates, I realize it’s nearly 7:45am! WHAT?! Where did the time go? I immediately flip open my Bible, grab my prayer journal, and flip to the right page in my Jesus Calling devotional. Feeling a bit rushed, I look back at the clock and I silently whisper, I have less than 15 minutes.

And for the first 3 minutes, I sat, unable to concentrate because I was ashamed. But let me clear, I was not ashamed about the “length” of time, but rather because the “fifteen minutes” I gave, were leftovers.

God deserves more than just my “leftovers”. I would never invite the Royal family over to my house for dinner and serve them whatever I had “leftover” on my plate or from last night’s meal. I wouldn’t even dare, but each day, that’s what happens. I give God my cold leftovers. I call them “cold” because I want to say that the “fifteen” minutes were of “somewhat” quality (warmed up leftovers) but my mind kept wandering to the last blog post I just read, or the pointless status update that still had me “stewing”. I couldn’t even give Him my full devotion.

Our fleshly desires, pressures, demands, expectations, everyday tasks and the temptations to just do something “really quick” push in from all sides and fill up our schedules. Do this! Finish that! Be there! Call them! By the end of the day or the end of our “task” and we are done giving our time to others, or in my case, myself, there is little time left to give God.

As I sit here thinking about the leftovers I gave to God, I have come up with lots of excuses. However someone once said to me, “Excuses are like butt-holes. Everyone has them and they stink.” So I’ll spare you my “stinky butt-holes” (sorry Mom for using that word) and just admit that my problem is not the volume of demands or my lack of scheduling skills. My problem is simply my values and priorities–what is truly important to me.

For me, I believe that our values and priorities are reflected in how we use our resources. And time is one of those resources that reflects our priorities. Yesterday, if you asked me if God was the number one priority in my life, I would have said “Pu-lease! I’m a Christian. Of Course!” But today? Today I swallow with a lump in my throat because I have a different answer and it’s not easy to spout out. I have come to realize that my actions, how I use my time, betray my words. I say God is number one, but then I relegate Him to a lesser number on my “to do” list. I fool myself by saying He is my top priority, but my actions of choosing to sleep in a little later, check my email first, and scroll up and down on Facebook show what is number one…they are evidence that prove my real priorities.

Definition of priority:  Something that is more important than other things and that needs to be dealt with first.

God deserves the best of me because after all, He only gives me His best. Therefore tomorrow (even though it is Saturday and I get a “pass” to sleep in), I will get out of bed, stumble to the kitchen for that hot cup of life coffee, and give God the first part of my day, the first of me, and the first of my thoughts. And why? Because I want my actions to come into alignment with my words.

If He is my top priority, then how I treat him 24 hours out of the day, needs to mirror the definition of a priority. He is more important than all of the other things and therefore, time spent with Him needs to be dealt with first.

Today I declare, no more leftovers.

Who declares this with me?

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34 thoughts on “Is Spending Time with God a Priority In Your Life?”

  1. LOL I love this – not only because I had to chuckle at just how much I can relate to the whole “just 5/10/15” more minutes but also the perceived eye rolls from working women. I sometimes feel super guilty because I think, yeah I’m a SAHM – minus the actual kids. Do fur babies count? Mmm, I’m guessing not. Either way, sometimes when I whine about something on my blog I think – yeah, remind me again why you’re complaining when you get to stay home while others have to face rush hour traffic, overlords (I mean supervisors) and a bevvy of pregnant coworkers. EEK! I actually am working on a “leftovers” issue of my own, albeit not at all related to issues of faith – for me, it’s actually about food. As a country we waste so much food, and as much as I hate to admit it, I’ve been guilty of that as well. Sometimes I forget I have something in the fridge, or I don’t feel like eating it (which begs the question why I bought it in the first place). So this year I’ve been working really hard on not wasting any food – making sure not to cook too much at a time and checking the pantry and fridge judiciously before making my grocery list. I cleaned out both my fridge and freezer before New Years so that I could be sure to keep track of things. So far, so good 🙂

    1. I am with ya on the whole leftover food thing! It’s just me and the hubs so when I cook we always have leftovers and then we never even have time to eat them or we get tired of them by the end of the week! lol! So now we eat cereal 😉 bahahaha!

      1. LOL I hear that!! I’m trying to eat healthier, so that’s one thing that makes it easier to cook smaller meals hehehehe 🙂

  2. Definitely something we all struggle with! (well maybe not all, but I do). It’s SO easy to get distracted and just leave our time with the Lord a few minutes long. When I have something every night after work (like this week) it makes it even worse!! He deserves our firsts not our lasts 🙂

    1. Several months ago, I used to be so busy with my mornings and my day that I would put it off until the evening. But then I felt convicted (everyone is different) because when I did my “quiet” time at night, I didn’t leave enough time to mediate on it throughout the day or leave Him room to speak to me or equip me for the day. So i switched to mornings and I enjoy it more…but now I gotta work on not cluttering my mind and giving Him the leftovers of my morning. Work in progress 😉 So tempting when the computer is right there.

    1. I have a feeling the more “firsts” I give Him and the more of me I give Him…the more of Him, He will give me and that’s what I desire. 🙂 Have a great weekend buddy!

  3. Oh this is such a true word. I have made it my business to avoid my phone when I get up in the morning. Sometimes it works and other days I fail. I get so convicted because it’s a hard fight. God totally deserves the best of us. I have to say on the weekends our time together is beautiful he wakes me up at 9am and we spend time in the word together. During the week I can feels it’s more of a struggle. Thanks for this reminder to give God the first and best part of our day. Sidenote if I run out of the house without being covered in his word the day is almost always a constant struggle.

    1. I know I am the same way about if I don’t spend at least some time with Him. Sometimes I don’t have time and then am wondering why my day is crappy by 2pm. That’s when I realize I “forgot” something that morning. That time with Him really does help equip us for our day. We don’t have the road map of what is ahead, but He does.

    1. It wasn’t easy to address and actually say out loud…”you are not number one” But once I said it, I felt free. It was like I was carrying it around but didn’t realize it.

  4. And the funny thing is, we don’t even realize that WE are the ones missing out. There’s this quote from C.S. Lewis that says, “It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.” We think we will find something meaningful by scrolling through Facebook, when really we already have treasure sitting in our bibles, waiting to be discovered. Love this post – I need to be reminded of this so often. I’m really bad about giving God my leftovers and missing out on the awesome things He could be sharing with me. Love ya girl, thanks for sharing!

    1. love ya too girlie! I’m really good about giving Him the first of our money but for some reason I have trouble with time :/

  5. Ah, such a true post that I have felt convicted about on more than one occasion. The illustration you use really rings true to me! If God is really my number one, my time must be spent to reflect that! PS- I love that your husband thinks you’re cute in the morning! 🙂

  6. Very powerful!! Very convicting!! I can relate to the stinky butt hole excuses 😉
    How exactly do we honour Him with our lips and then deny Him by our lifestyles?
    I know everyday I must grieve Him by my lack of ability to die to self … Die to self easier once intimacy a priority, but intimacy hard without death to self lol. Vicious circle? Or perhaps Him sorting the men from the boys?
    Thank you for sharing so honestly and encouraging me to get up and give Him the first serving. Thank you for being real and loving. Thank you for wanting more of Him and thus wanting every other believer to examine priorities and in turn want more of Him too.
    Time to call it out and be transparent before The King!
    Thank you Lord that you love us enough to keep knocking at the door … Lord help us to answer the door … NOW!!

  7. Amen! Ok, now I’m always going to remember this “leftovers” analogy. Do not pass go, do not collect $200…it’s straight to my devotional in the morning! haha! I do the same thing some mornings and get caught up in computer time, and then feel all guilty for rushing through devotion with God time more. He really does deserve our time as a a FIRST course!

    1. oh my goodness, I love your Monopoly analogy! I don’t know why I waste time before meeting with Him first. It’s me that misses out on ALL the blessings He has for me. He is the one the one that knows what my day will look like and can equip me. I hope you have had a great weekend!!

  8. Thank you so much for posting this! I struggle with this, and especially recently (since I began working outside the home.) I let other things become more of a priority than they should be… more of a priority than time with MY SAVIOR. I feel ashamed even typing that, but it’s so true. Silly to let a few taps of the “snooze” button get in the way of my time with Him… with the One who can provide strength and guidance for the day ahead. This blog post is so timely. Thanks for reminding us all of what is truly important…. Giving Christ the best we have to offer, including the best of our time and energy!!!

    1. I don’t know why I do this…it’s not like God is suffering. It’s me. It’s us who suffer when we don’t take the time for Him first thing. It’s still a work in progress…I keep wanting to revert to doing other “things” first rather than Him. I hope you have a great week!!! xoxoxo

    2. I don’t know why I do this…it’s not like God is suffering. It’s me. It’s us who suffer when we don’t take the time for Him first thing. It’s still a work in progress…I keep wanting to revert to doing other “things” first rather than Him. I hope you have a great week!!! xoxoxo

  9. I am so guilty of this. And what kills me is, even though I don’t want to do that, I still some how end up doing it again at some point. Lord, change my heart, give me the desire and passion to make you number one.

    You are such an encouragement!!

    1. It’s a work in progress for me even after I wrote this post. I don’t know why I do it either?!? I’m the one missing out :/

  10. Found this link through your latest blog post. Boy am I guilty of giving HIM the leftovers, the crumbs in the bottom of the chip bag, or the last two cookies in the box 🙁 Thank you for the reminder to put HIM first and to seek HIS guidance. Your blog continues to be a source of encouragement for me. Thank you for writing!

  11. This is something I struggle with and I pray this year as He stated, “He will make all things new…” I will change my morning routines. I started a few days ago with my quiet time and prayer. So I see progress. I guess we are all learning to put God first.

    1. Thanks so much for stopping by, Rebeca! I totally forgot about this post until now and you know? I needed the reminder again. So thank you!

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