Even When It’s Not Enjoyable
One of the main reasons we struggle with having a quiet time is that it is often unenjoyable. Prayer can feel monotonous, Scripture can seem dull, and worship can feel lifeless. I completely understand these feelings, and I honestly experience them often. It’s incredibly easy for our quiet time to become a monotonous habit that we do at _____ time of day for _____ number of minutes using _____ resources. It’s simply a fact of life that habits, though they’re certainly beneficial, can become tedious and dull over time.
Here’s the thing though, enjoyable or not, we have a calling as believers to fellowship with God. This relationship (like all relationships) is built by spending intentional time with Jesus–time reading His Word, praying, and worshiping. If we regularly choose to hit the snooze button, scroll through social media, or watch a new Netflix show over being with our loved ones, our relationships suffer. Unlike our friends, Jesus loves us unconditionally and is incredibly patient with us. But, if we value our relationship with Him, we will show that by how we use our time. So here are a few Bible passages to keep in mind as you think about your quiet time habit and how to be faithful in it, even when it’s not enjoyable.
Even when it’s not enjoyable, consistent fellowship with God brings refreshment because we can cast our sin on Him and ask for forgiveness.
When I kept silent about my sin, my body wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me; my vitality was drained away as with the fever heat of summer. Selah. I acknowledged my sin to You, and my iniquity I did not hide; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord”; and You forgave the guilt of my sin. Selah. Therefore, let everyone who is godly pray to You in a time when You may be found; surely in a flood of great waters they will not reach him. You are my hiding place; You preserve me from trouble; You surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah. I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you should go; I will counsel you with My eye upon you. Do not be as the horse or as the mule which have no understanding, whose trappings include bit and bridle to hold them in check, otherwise they will not come near to you. Many are the sorrows of the wicked, but he who trusts in the Lord, lovingkindness shall surround him. (Psalm 32:3-10 NASB1995)
Even when it’s not enjoyable, consistent fellowship with God brings comfort because He listens to our concerns.
As for me, I shall call upon God, and the Lord will save me. Evening and morning and at noon, I will complain and murmur, and He will hear my voice. (Psalm 55:16-17 NASB1995)
Even when it’s not enjoyable, consistent fellowship with God brings joy because He works in unexpected, wonderful ways and we recognize them through praise.
It is good to give thanks to the Lord and to sing praises to Your name, O Most High; to declare Your lovingkindness in the morning and Your faithfulness by night, with the ten-stringed lute and with the harp, with resounding music upon the lyre. For You, O Lord, have made me glad by what You have done, I will sing for joy at the works of Your hands. (Psalm 92:1-4 NASB1995)
Having a quiet time every now and then simply isn’t enough to grow in our relationship with God. Growth happens when we consistently spend time with Him. Just as He continues to love us faithfully, let us faithfully show our love for Him by consistently fellowshipping with Him through Scripture, prayer, and worship.
Pray for God to refresh your heart, mind, and soul. And ask Him for strength in the monotonous moments.
Change your perspective. Instead of viewing your quiet time as a chore or a to-do list task, view it as an opportunity to grow in your relationship with God and to show your love for Him.
Remember that not every quiet time has to feel enjoyable or exciting for it to be worthwhile. God works behind the scenes of our lives, even when we don’t feel like He’s working.
Grace enjoys spending time with her family, hanging out with friends, and watching her favorite TV shows. She is the author of Real Recovery: What Eating Disorder Recovery Actually Looks Like (2022). She shares her struggles at her blog,Tizzie's Tidbits of Truth.