It's a brand new year, and I want to get back in the habit of reading my Bible daily, and spending more time with the Lord than I have been. So, yesterday I started reading in Luke 1.
The part that stuck out to me was verse 6, which says, "They were both righteous in the sight of God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and requirements of the Lord." The 'they' who are being referred to are Elizabeth and Zacharias, the parents of John the Baptist. They were old and Elizabeth was barren. Yet, Gabriel appeared to them and brought the news that Elizabeth would have a baby in her old age.
As I read verse six over and over a few more times, it made me wonder if that might be a reason as to why I am not married and have kids - because I'm not righteous in the sight of God and I don't walk blamelessly in all His commandments and requirements. Do I need to improve my 'walk' and spend more time in the Word and live a more Christ-like life before any of this will happen for me?
I just wish it would happen soon (the marriage and kids). I'm not getting any younger - especially with my birthday looming around the corner in less than three weeks!
Today, in chapter 2, the part that spoke out to me was part of verse 7, "...because there was no room for them in the inn." This is, of course, referring to the birth of Jesus and the fact that He was found lying in a manger (which is a feeding trough). Even as He was being born, people didn't have room for Him. It makes me stop and wonder if I have room for Jesus in my life?!
Lately, (or for awhile), it seems like the honest answer would have to be no. I would like to say how devout I am, how Jesus always comes first and has room in my heart, in my life, but I need to be honest about it. Most days I am consumed with thoughts of work, work itself, what I want to do or need to do, things I'd like to have, places I'd like to go, and even just relaxing. I watch TV, I'm on the computer a lot, get together with friends - but for awhile now, I haven't been making time for the Lord in my life. Yes, He should get first dibs on my time, my day, but often that doesn't happen. Oh, I'll try to squeeze in a few little prayers during the day, or before I go to bed, and try to claim that as my "time" spent in God's presence. Or, I will simply read a chapter in the Bible and not meditate or pray on it. But let's face it...that isn't quite time that is spent with Him.
I need to be spending quality time in the Word and in prayer if I want to be able to hear Him or have Him speak to me. And how can that happen if I don't take the time to be with Him?
A good part of any relationship or in communication involves listening. If I want to hear from the Lord, then I need to stop all the talking I do to Him, all the business and laziness in my life, and just sit and listen (or prayerfully listen)...or even throughout the day be more conscious of His presence and the fact that He might be speaking through someone else to me.
It all takes effort (and something like 30 days for it to become a habit), and practice to make it a daily part of my life. And, that is something I need to work on!