Behold, I stand at the door and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. — Revelation 3:20
I love it when my wife, Kaylee, and I have the chance to go out on a dinner date. Honestly, it’s not so much the food I look forward to (although I love a good steak!), it’s the dedicated time we get to spend together—time specifically set aside with no interruptions or distractions.
I always cherish this time. We set everything aside and have “us” time. We talk about everything, solving all of the world’s problems one-by-one. We discuss the past week, our jobs, goals we achieved (well, Kaylee talks about what she’s achieved; I talk about what I’m still hoping to achieve), the dreams we have for our future, upcoming events—when I say we talk about everything, I mean everything.
This time is always fun and memorable. But perhaps most importantly, it’s refreshing. I always fall even more in love with Kaylee and am even more amazed with the incredible woman she is after these special times. These times for us are vital. For our marriage to continue to grow, we must purposefully set aside these special, quality times where it’s just us.
Stick with me for a bit.
As a Christian—a child of God—we are in a very real relationship with God. If you’re like me, you struggle at times because our relationship with God isn’t physically tangible like every other relationship we have here on earth. I can’t literally sit down and talk face-to-face with God. I can’t walk up to Him and give Him a hug. And no, I can’t sit down with God and actually eat a meal.
Sometimes it helps to illustrate the intangible with the tangible. The principles we use in our relationships here on earth provide a very real picture of how we are to interact in our relationship with God.
So let’s pretend you could sit down with God and have dinner.
This isn’t just time with God. It’s quality time.
Beyond spending quantity of time with God, we must spend quality time with God.
I struggled with this for a long time. I was always taught to spend my quality time with God first thing in the morning. I’d read the selected Scripture passage and have a time of prayer—but I was half asleep! For many years, this more or less described my personal walk with God. I got up, read my Bible, prayed, and then went on with my day.
I’m not a morning person. Just ask my wife or my coworkers. At 6AM, there’s nothing quality about anything I do, including my time with God.
Have you ever been out on a date at 6AM? Have you ever hung out with friends first thing in the morning? Have you ever spent quality time with anyone that early?
I doubt any of you have. I have never and will never wake up, roll over, and ask my wife out on a date at six o’clock in the morning. Not only would my wife think I was crazy, there wouldn’t be much relational building at such an early hour.
If I don't spend quality time with others first thing in the morning, why do I try to with God? Click To Tweet
If I don’t spend quality time with others first thing in the morning, why in the world do I try to with God?
Now, before you think I’m advocating something I’m not, hear me out.
All throughout the Bible we see examples of those who rose early in the morning to seek God’s face. The biblical principle is very clear: your first thoughts of the day should always be of God. Start your day off in prayer and Bible reading—time with Him—but don’t fool yourself into thinking that after this one, groggy interaction you’re all set.
Every morning I get up, read a chapter from Proverbs, and pray. I start my day off spending time with God, but this isn’t my quality time with Him. I’ve really only just begun.
Let me illustrate again. When I wake up, my wife and I don’t have quality time before I leave for work. My first thoughts are of her, what we have planned for that day, and the time we’ll get to spend together. But I’m aware of two things: this isn’t quality time with her, and this isn’t the only time I’ll spend with her for the rest of the day. I don’t see her, try to have a quick conversation, and then check her off my list for the day.
Just like my relationship with my wife, I find that usually the best time I can spend with God after our brief time together in the morning is either in the afternoons or in the evening. It’s then that I can spend quality time with Him; my mind is engaged, I’m energized—I’m physically and spiritually ready to commune with God.
I’d challenge you to seriously evaluate the time you have or haven’t been spending with God. You might be spending a large quantity of time with Him—without it being quality. And, yes, I realize that just like every relationship, you determine what does and doesn’t work.
But humor me.
For the next couple of days, schedule some dinner dates with God. Get alone with Him for some quality time when you’re fully engaged. I have a feeling it might do wonders for your relationship with Him.