Have you ever gone through a day where you never gave God a single thought? I know I have. And there have been those days when I get off to a good start (having Personal Worship with God), but then I forget God the rest of the day … and it’s not until my Personal Worship time with God the next day that I have my next thought about God!
I want you to know that this blog is not about laying guilt trips on us. Rather, I want us to recognize the reality of how difficult it is to engage with God in “worship in the everyday ordinary.” It’s not easy to focus on God during the day. In fact, it is hard. In the words of Max Dugan (from the movie, “A League of Their Own”): “If it were easy, everyone would be doing it!” As whole life worshipers, we want to be walk with God throughout our day. But there are reasons why it’s seldom of “piece of cake.”
1. We are creatures of habit. We are used to doing things without God. So, if everything goes smoothly we just go on to the next thing. In fact, God usually doesn’t come to mind until something goes wrong (which is one of the few ways God can get our attention!)
2. We are creatures of the flesh. (I mean “flesh” in the sense of our fallen nature) We have a default setting of “not God” in our being. Our ego or false self want to be in charge of everything. Even though we are new creatures in Christ, our flesh wants to constantly resurrect and assert its authority.
3. There is an enemy of our soul who wants to keep us from God (thinking about God, praying to God, communing with God) as much as possible. And when we do have the presence of heart, mind, and soul to respond to God, the enemy goes full bore to distract, bore, suppress and minimize this desire.
So it takes proactive steps, awareness of what we are up against (the dark powers within and without), and much grace from God to engage with God during the day. There are two things that will help us:
1) Anytime is the right time to re-engage with God. It can be mid-morning, lunch time, afternoon, evening, or even right before we hit the pillow. You can re-engage with God anytime (even now).
2) The object is not to feel guilty that we don’t think about God all the time. I think we focus too much on the lofty expectation that good Christians are centered on God all the time. Such thinking frustrates us and we end up not spending any time with God at all. Rather, look to improve our “get back to God” so that we realistically increase our engagement with Him during our days. One time a day is an improvement from none. Two times is an improvement over once. And so on.
Here are some practical ideas that have helped me to engage with God more frequently during the day:
– Setting the chime function on my watch or phone to go off on the hour as a reminder to pray a “breath prayer.”
– Start each work project with one minute of silent prayer.
– Every time I turn on my car, I thank God for a family member or friend.
– Praying the Daily Office once or twice a day (there are Offices for every three hours of the day)
– Reading the Bible at lunch time.
– Taking a walk after dinner and praying through the “examen” (evaluating my day in the presence of God – I’ll write about this some later).
So what are some ways that have helped you get back to God during the day?
What is one thing that you proactively do today to get back to God?
As we worship God in the everyday ordinary in greater frequency, we see His power, grace and wisdom revealed in greater ways.