In Personal Worship it is so easy to just jump right into the spiritual disciplines. We are so accustomed to “doing” that it is hard for us just to “be” – which is where we need to be when we meet with Jesus. There are so many things that fill our hearts and minds – things we need to do, people we need to see, thoughts of past, present and future, worries and fears. The one thing we need to do is STOP and release these things so that we can do the One thing that is needful – that is to sit at the feet of Jesus (Luke 10:42).
Here is a routine that helps me to be fully present to the Lord as I begin my Personal Worship time:
1. Light a candle. This is not for ambience. The lit candle represents the very real Presence of the Holy Spirit (I got this from Ruth Haley Barton @transformingcnt #invitationtosolidtudeandsilence). Every time I look at it, I am reminded that He is with me.
2. Begin with a time of silence and stillness. I get myself in a position that is comfortable, but not lazy. I want to be attentive and alert. Once I am in that position, I close my eyes and try to remain as still as possible.
3. Take deep breaths. As I inhale and exhale deeply, the noise in my head begins to leak out and I begin to hear things I never noticed before. I hear the sounds of my environment (cars driving down the street, the movement of the second hand of my wall clock, the singing of the birds outside my house). Then I hear the sounds of my body (my breathing and the faint pounding of my pulse). Ultimately, I am positioning my soul to hear the small, still voice of God (1 Kings 19:12).
All of this takes about 2-3 minutes, but they are the most important moments of my Personal Worship. That moment sets the posture and priority of attending to God and our precious time together. Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still and know that I am God.” This infers that knowing the presence of God demands that we still our souls before Him.
This is the air I breathe: Your holy Presence living in me … and I’m desperate for You
1. What helps you to be present to Jesus?
2. What steps can you take today to be more present to Jesus in Personal Worship and beyond?