Jan 27

Growing Closer to God and Giveaway

Hey y’all!  My name is Heather Bleier, I’m taking over for Melissa today, and I’m thrilled to be here!  In our pursuit of nourishing our hearts with God instead of food, today I want us to focus on Chapter Six, “Growing Closer to God.”  Just as Lysa TerKeurst encouraged us to come up with a healthy eating plan to help feed our bodies with good things; I would like to encourage you to come up with a healthy eating plan to feed your heart with God’s Word.  I call this plan TAPP and it’s pretty simple, with a few no brainer ideas that I hope will help get you going on some fine dining with the Lord each day.

Time

God’s Word gives us direction on spending time with Him, both in the Old and New Testaments.  King David records in Psalm 5:3, that He meets with God early in the morning as does Jesus according to Mark 1:35.  The quiet of morning seems to be the prime time for God time.  It’s in this quiet before the storm, we are able to receive strength, focus, and direction for the day and give God our first fruits.  Now for me, morning makes the most sense…then again I don’t have any children and I can only imagine the dynamic children must add to a person’s morning routine.  I also know that the morning wasn’t the only time Christ set out to meet with His Father; though it seems to be His first choice.  Christ was often found ministering to God’s people, teaching and healing them.  I wonder at the complete physical exhaustion Jesus must have felt as people were brought to Him at all hours of the day…and night.   It would make sense then that there were times Jesus couldn’t meet with God in the morning and instead, He would take time later in the day {see: Mark 6:45-46, Mark 14:32-34, Luke 5:16, Luke 6:12}.  This must be my first step, I must set a Time to spend with God each day and dedicate it to Him.

For me, that is 6:00-8:00am each morning.  When will your Time be?  Will it need to change each day because of work, school, or family?  Whenever it is, put it on your daily calendar either on your phone or the one hanging in the kitchen, let your family know when this time will be and ask them to honor it by letting you be alone.

Accountability

Satan would have us believe that we can’t do this and he’s right.  On our own…we will falter every time, but “{We} can do all this through Him who gives {us} strength,” Philippians 4:13.  God is the one who will give us strength to do this and in Proverbs 27:17 He reminds us that “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”  What we need is some tangible Accountability.  We need someone who will ask us each day, “How have you spent one on one time with God today?” or “What did you learn and how does it affect your faith?”  Some of us may even need someone who will make us feel a little guilty if we skip our Quiet Time; though for others, that may be counterproductive.  Let that person know when you plan on setting aside your Quiet Time and send them a text, email or call them when you’re done, or have them call you, but find what works.

For me, it’s my husband, but whether our Accountability partner is our spouse, dear friend, sibling, co-worker, mom, dad, or whomever, we need to know someone is going to help us stay on track.

Place

We all have those places where we can focus and those places that keep us hopelessly distracted.  Our Quiet Time space needs to be set up so that when we sit down with the Lord, nothing will get in our way.  One thing I know, I cannot have my iPhone within reach of my Quiet Time area!  I have no internet at home, so my laptop posses no problem, but that little 4.9oz phone might as well be dipped in glitter…or chocolate!  When I get myself up for my Quiet Time, I have to set my phone in the kitchen or some other space in the house where it cannot disturb me.  I have also set up my little Quiet Time space with everything I need; my Bible, journal, a light, a delicious smelling candle, extra pens, pencils and highlighters, note cards, a few devotion books, and of course whatever Bible study I’m doing at the time.  {My hubby is up and about by 7:00am, so a good pair of noise reducing ear buds and an iPod are also essential for my Quiet Time space.}  If you have a little wall space, you can put up some corkboard and pin up Bible verses, questions, prayer requests, pictures, or whatever else draws your heart to God.

My space is a desk in my living room my hubby bought me for Christmas and it’s set aside for one purpose, a Place for God and I to meet.  What Place will you set aside for your Quiet Time?  It could be your kitchen table, a desk in a spare room, a nook in the laundry room or garage; I tried using my couch for a while…but found myself falling back asleep.  You could add an empty chair, a picture, or light a candle to remind you of God’s presence there with you.

Plan

What will you do during your Quiet Time?  Will it be the same each day or will you change it up each time?  Here are a few ideas…

  1. Begin with a prayer.  It doesn’t have to be long; after all, the Lord’s Prayer only takes 30 seconds to say {I know, I timed it}.  Simply ask God to join you and help you understand whatever He reveals to you in His Word.
  2. Spend a little time each day memorizing Scripture.  Need tips on how?  This post just might do the trick: Memorizing God’s Word.
  3. Start a Bible reading plan or create one of your own.  There are TONs of reading plans out there, from reading the Bible in a year to the top 100 passages of the Bible.  Choose one and stick with it: YouVersion Bible Reading Plans
  4. Purchase a devotion book or subscribe to a daily email devotional.  I recommend the Proverbs 31 Devotions which include application steps, additional resources, and extra Bible verses.
  5. Use those pencils and highlighters!  God isn’t going to be upset if you mark in His book; after all, it’s His gift to us!
  6. Jot down your thoughts on whatever you read.  Whether you read a devotion, passage of the Bible or answered a few questions from a Bible study, write down what it means to you and how it will affect your faith.  Write down if it made you happy, sad, mad, confused, or whatever, but simply write your reaction to what you have read.
  7. Close with prayer.  Perhaps you have people who have asked you to pray for them, this would be a great time to lift them up to the Lord.  Have a long list of requests?  Divide them up throughout the week.  Wendy Blight has a great example how in week four of her study called Cultivating a Heart of Prayer.  You could also dedicate one day a week just to praying; believe me you will be able to fill that time up quickly and wish you had more time!

Whatever your Quiet Time looks like, make it your own, the above are just a few ideas and suggestions to help get you started.  As Lysa reminds us in Chapter Six, “God can’t be reduced to a checklist,” {pg 59} let Him help you decide what your TAPP should look like!

Father, You know when we sit and when we rise, You know when we hunger and thirst.  We ask You to help us crave Your Word above everything.  Whether it’s in the quiet of morning or in the cool of the evening, draw our hearts closer to You as we dive into Your Word.  When we set aside time to be with You, help us to guard that time, making it a precious part of our day, let nothing else get in our way.  Meet with us there, open our hungry hearts to receive nourishment from the bread of heaven, Your Son Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh.  Thank You.  Thank You for the gift of Your Word, that You, the Living God, our creator, actually desires to be with us!  Who are we Lord that You would crave being with us?  We are Your creation, made from the dust of the earth and yet…here You are…living in us!  Lord my heart is so humbled by that simple fact.  You have set our bodies apart to be Your dwelling place, Your temple, holy and precious.  There is no place we can go where we are not in Your presence, no place on earth can hide us from Your sight.  What comfort that brings!  We are never out of Your sight and never out of Your care.  Draw us closer to You each day as we draw near Your Son through the precious Word You have given.  We ask this in Your Son’s name, Amen!

Leave a comment sharing what your TAPP looks like to be entered to win a year’s subscription to the Proverbs 31 Magazine.  The winner will be announced in Sunday’s post.

 

Yours in Christ,

Heather Bleier

 

Melissa

Comments

  1. Good morning, Heather, and thank you for filling in for Melissa on her birthday!! 😀

    I became a Christian 17 years ago, and my quiet time was the first thing the Holy Spirit helped me establish. I’d get up early in the morning before my husband and children got up, had my Bible and journal ready in my livingroom. I’d only bring my coffee. 😉 I’d read something out of Psalms before I prayed, and would have names/situation to pray for in my journal. I would journal my prayers to help keep me focused. I have never had an accountability partner in prayer, but that’s a wonderful idea.

    As the years went on, I found my quiet time had gotten shorter, so I started praying for the LORD to wake me up earlier, and He did!! Sometimes, He prompts me to get up to pray for someone. Now, I get up and use the kitchen table as my prayer place. I have my Bible and prayer journal on the kitchen table, and while I no longer write my prayers, I still have names/situations written down that I pray for. I like this so I can write “answered” as a reminder to thank God for His provision for these. I get a daily devotional in my email and will read that now before my quiet time. I am on two prayer websites, and leave prayers on the walls.

    • Don’t you just LOVE how God answers our prayer when we desire to spend time with Him? I love how you prayed asking Him to help you wake up a bit earlier and how He has answered but prompting you!

      <3 Heather

  2. Oh…my quiet time! I get up every morning before work at 5 a.m. to start my quiet time. I read my bible and do my studies. Yes, it does look like a mess there with my bible, pencils, paper, note cards, highlighter, books, devotional, etc., etc., etc. Unfortunately, my computer is there as well and has chipped away at more and more of my quiet time. This is why I am in a state of starvation, spiritually. Thank you for this study to help me realize this and get back on track at feasting on the Lord and not on ME. (P.S. Thanks Heather for filling in!)

    • I understand how the computer/internet can chip away at our time. I have to keep my phone far away from me, but it’s not easy sometimes! I pray that God would strengthen your resolve to dedicate this time to be with Him!

      <3 Heather

  3. Kimberly Duvall says:

    Good Morning!
    Thank you Heather for your TAPP model :) It’s an awesome reminder and refresher for my time with the Lord. I appreciate your time and enjoyed reading!!
    Have a great day!
    k

  4. Thanks, Heather, for filling in for Melissa! This is a wonderful plan. I like the TAPP plan. I also learned a long time ago something that helps people who aren’t quite sure where to start when they pray:

    P – Praise – First, just give praise to God for Who He is.
    R – Repentance – Then confess any sins that come between you and God.
    A – Ask – Now it’s time to go to God with any requests you may have.
    Y – Yield – This is the most important to me. Yield to God’s will in everything.

    This is a good way to remember how to pray, but we must also remember that prayer is just talking between us and God. It doesn’t have to follow a specific plan. I just know that in the past I have gone to God with my requests first, and did not give Him the praise He deserves or confess my sins. He wants to hear our requests but He deserves praise for Who He is, and He doesn’t want us to leave any sin that has not been confessed that would in any way hinder our relationship with Him.

    I get up early and start each morning with my Bible, computer, and different devotional books and Bible studies. Made to Crave is the first one that I do and I check the message boards and all and find encouragement from others’ discussions on the study. I sit on the couch with my Bible and books by my side and computer in my lap. Sometimes I’m there a while and find my back doesn’t always like that soft couch, but it’s comfortable while I spend time in God’s word. My brother and sister-in-law gave me a devotional for wives this past Christmas, and I’m actually getting married in three weeks so I have started that book for the year. I also get a magazine type devotional that I read each morning.

    I bought a journal with Scriptures and phrases on each page to record my thoughts when I read my devotionals and my prayers. I find that the Scriptures placed throughout the journal also encourage me. On certain days they are so relevant to something I am going trough that I know it’s not a coincidence. I journal a lot too. I love to journal my prayers. Writing love letters to God just come so natural to me. I pray that God blesses each one on this journey!

    • Candice, your post made me smile!! Thank you for putting up the P.R.A.Y. acronym. I used to pray in a Moms In Touch group, and we used praise, confession, thanksgiving, and intercession. I learned that praising God first takes the focus off ourselves, and puts the focus on the Father, where it belongs…praising Him for Who He is, His attributes, His name and His character, NOT for what He has done (that’s thanksgiving). Confession is important; Nehemiah confessed the sins of Israel (Nehemiah 1 and 9). I think we like to forget about that we need to do that. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9) Then there’s thanksgiving before we put our requests, remembering to thank Him for His provisions and answered prayers.

    • I love the PRAY acronym Candice! I use ACTSS to teach my students the basics and always remind them that this is just a conversation between them and the Lord. Blessings to you girl!

      http://bit.ly/vOargq

      • I couldn’t remember that acronym…adoration, confession, thanksgiving and supplication…I LOVE the second “s” for “shhhhhhhh”!!

  5. Happy Friday Heather!! What a b-day gift you’ve given to Melissa to do her post today, AND what an incredible gift you’ve given US with the words of your post! THANK YOU!! I’ve been a CHRISTIAN since I was 12, but never fully implemented a daily time with HIM until I’ve suffered through some big storms in my life and realized the importance of that daily communion with HIM-time for praise, for reflection, for requests, BUT most importantly time to LISTEN to HIM. My quiet time is in the morning before my hubby gets up and moving. I’m up by 5, have my BIBLE, my note cards/journal, my daily devotionals, and my BIBLE study book, my pens, highlighters and sticky notes. I always pray first for the HOLY SPIRIT to open my eyes and my heart to be receptive to HIM and HIS word and for my learning. I spend the next hour or so just reading HIS word, seeing and hearing the application in my life through my daily devotionals and BIBLE study books. (I do have my cup of coffee to enjoy along with my quiet time with the LORD! :-)
    ) I LOVE this time and protect it at all costs, for it’s in this time that I can connect with my creator and bask in HIM! It truly IS the best time of my day!!
    I LOVE your TAPP ideas. Funny side-note; I’m a teacher and use TAPP for my 5th graders to implement in their writing process. Now when I am working with them and they’re doing their TAPP, I am going to be smiling, thinking about MY TAPP!! LOVE IT!!!
    Have a BLESSED GOD-FILLED day, Heather :-)
    IN CHRIST,
    Kendra

    • Yes, coffee is a must for my QT in the morning as well…though with MTC I have been cutting down on my caffeine intake…so decaf has had to suffice for now! Your students are so blessed to have a teacher who has a heart for the Lord!!!

      <3 Heather

  6. Heather P says:

    I recently started taking my shower before my quiet time to keep me awake. I get up well before time to get my daughter up to have time with God. I generally read something inspirational, read a Psalm, and try to read through my Bible each year. Just this week, I have been doing my extra studies right after my daughter gets on the bus for school. This allows extra time to hear from God during my studies.

    • I love how you spend time with Him before your daughter gets up, and then get back to it once she leaves. It shows that not every interruption is a bad thing but it can give us a chance to reflect on what God has shown us before we dive in again. My friend WendyB would call that a Divine Interruption :)

      <3 Heather

  7. Thank you Heather for taking this day and posting for us all. TAPP…I like that :) I am sure Melissa is blessed today as well as all of us at your sharing. I had a journal and on the front cover I had written DATE… Daily A Time, Everyday. I think I needed to emphasize the daily so repeated it in a different way, just as God’s word repeats important things. Perhaps I need that reminder again in my life. I have taken part in Wendy Pope’s Psalms Study this year and that is focusing me. God is good and gives us so many choices…I would love to do them all! I have also just picked up Lysa’s Made to Crave and started that. I do not have a TAPP…I carry my laptop with me in the house and many times I find myself standing in the kitchen with it on the counter, yesterday I asked myself why I choose to do it standing :) but I guess when the Spirit moves me I go with it~I like that I can be flexible. I believe it is okay, but would be better to be more disciplined with the time set aside. Thank you for this today!
    Lastly may I add~~
    HAPPY BIRTHDAY MELISSA!!!! May the Lord bless you richly today as you celebrate your life, his gift to you and your gift to him (and the many women who are encouraged by you).

    • That’s the beautiful thing about spending time with God Cindy, we can do it at anytime, anywhere! Sitting, lounging, or standing! Blessings on the time you spend with God wherever you may be! I carry my little Bible and journal in my purse for those random, refreshing moments in the middle of my day :)

      <3 Heather

    • Yes it is a GREAT birthday gift (for all of us really) that Heather is posting today! Her writing is always so inspiring and thought provoking. Love them.

      Thanks for the birthday wishes :)

  8. Julie Howard says:

    My TAPP doesn’t look like it should….but it will! :) I, however, am NOT a morning person, so evenings work better for me because I am very much a night owl. However, I am committing through this study to get closer to God and so I am reevaluating my TAPP and who knows, it may become a morning habit. :)

    • I hear you there Julie! For anyone who knows me at all…mornings are NOT my friend! That soft comfy bed, snuggled up next to my hubby, make it a challenge to get myself up sometimes. Enjoy your time with God in the evening! If that is what works for you, then stick with it girl!!

      <3 Heather

    • Julie I can SO relate to you not being a morning person, The day shouldn’t start til noon. Lately however I have been starting my day earlier and earlier with coffee in hand. Evenings have always been my favorite time of day with the Lord.

    • I to have my quiet time in the evening and it is not because I am not a morning person because I really love mornings but I seem so busy in the morning and evenings work best for me. I get everyone off to bed and then I sit with my Bible, devotional (Proverbs 31), pencil, highlighter,and note book. I do pray for God’s direction to draw ever so close to Him, I am looking forward to reading the information on Memorizing God’s Word so I can ponder them in my heart. Thank you Heather for an awesome devotional. God Bless you.

  9. Catherine Shepard says:

    Good morning. I don’t have a quiet time in my life right now, but I do carry my devotional and bible everywhere I go. My iPhone has all the “books” I need and I can make notes in it and highlight and underscore to my heart’s content.
    I find in the early evening works best for me. See I wake up with my mind racing on what I need to get done at work that day and it is very hard to quiet it. But after that is all done and my body and mind relax, I can spend some time with God and my studies.
    When I first started doing a quiet time many years ago, I was in a prayer group and learned to pray the Lord’s prayer and believe me – 30 seconds doesn’t even come close. I can say the Lord’s Prayer in 30 seconds but to actually pray it – that takes much longer. Next time look at each verse and pray it!
    Our Father – oh most gracious God, maker of the universe and all that dwells within, I come to You today with humility for you are my Maker, Who art in Heaven – you rule over all you see and created. You are the Great I am. Hallowed be thy name, etc Do you get the picture? Do you realize there are many names for God? Just realizing and acknowledging these names of our Creator is a life changing, heart realizing, God blessing time.
    I am going to have to find that study and start this again. I truly miss PRAYING the Lord’s Prayer. Yes I recite it daily (sometimes more than that), but it’s been too long. Please forgive me Lord for my transgression.

    And Melissa – Have a wonderfully blessed and happy birthday.

    • Catherine,
      Thank you for your words about the Lord’s Prayer! Some get it in their minds that if you are going to pray it has to be for a long time and if they don’t thing they have “enough” time to pray then they simply don’t. I only wanted to encourage those who need to take that first step and realize that it’s not about how long they pray, but that they simply take a few moments to talk with God. The Lord’s Prayer is a great place to start and grow from there. Blessings!

      <3 Heather

  10. I get up at 5:20 to get quiet time in. My husband leaves for work at 5:00 so that gives me an hour before kids get up for school and an hour and a half before I get the two kids I keep. We finished a small space in our house a few years ago that has become my husband’s and my little den and place to meet with God. We have two chairs in their our Bibles, books, pens, etc. Like you, no phones or laptops allowed. I have a few books on my iPad and I have asked the Lord to keep me focused during this time and not feel the need to check my email etc. I have found that can be a challenge sometimes. Honestly, technology is not my best friend for Bible study. I find if I simply pursue God, He meets me. I keep a study on hand, a list of prayer requests and research materials. I am a mess if I don’t start the day with God. Those days I am tempted to pull the covers up and sleep a little longer are not usually my best unless I make time at some point in the day. The day gets going so fast and I need His guidance to settle my heart and mind and give me my orders for the day.

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Melissa!!!

    • Jenny,
      Wow! I just LOVE how you and your husband have a space set up to where both of you can spend time with God. How wonderful it must be to have that little sanctuary the two of you can share and draw closer to God! It just warms me to the core thinking about that!

      <3 Heather

  11. Years ago my Pastor/friend asked me if I thought my overeating was a bad habit or a spiritual problem. I said, “Bad habit.” I realize that I’ve been fooling myself all this time thinking I should be able to break this “bad habit” but not admitting I had a spiritual hunger. I’ve turned to food for every emotional problem, every trying time and every occasion for celebration (birthday, church dinner, the mail came, anniversary, bathroom’s clean, you get the idea). Heather, your post has convicted (gently) me that I need to eat spiritual food every day as well physical food. I’m making this commitment to begin today to do it on a daily basis with God’s help.

    • Nancy,
      I am praying that as you take this step towards eating spiritually each day, that God will meet with you and bless this time you two get to spend together!

      <3 Heather

  12. Lisa Taylor says:

    Thank you Heather for the wonderful post. My quiet time has been pushed a side most of the time because I can’t seem to get up like I once did…I will have to go to bed earlier so I can get up….I miss my time with God….Is the TAPP somewhere that I can download and print? I am so enjoying doing this Bible study I love you ladies so much, you all are such an inspiration to me….Lisa T

    • Lisa,
      I don’t have this in a document form, but feel free to copy and paste this into a Word document and print it out for your own use or even to share!

      <3 Heather

  13. Lisa Taylor says:

    OPPS Happy Birthday Melissa!!!! Have a blessed day….

  14. Heather, you have given us all some wonderful ideas on how to start/improve our prayer places. And I have gotten ideas from all the comments. My prayer time also is in the morning, but I do like to end my day with prayer – mostly to thank God for giving me another day and all my blessings. I have my Bible, devotion books, pen and highlighter on my kitchen table, and I also light a candle. Sometimes I spend more time praying than others, but I find if I start my day with God, everything seems to flow more smoothly – or maybe I’m just able to handle it better. Hope everyone has a blessed weekend. Thanks again, Heather. Happy Birthday, Melissa!

    • Melissa,
      I hear you about how prayer time seems to get longer and longer! There is just always so much to share with God! Sometimes, my whole QT is dedicated to just talking with Him. Enjoy that precious time with your Creator girl, He LOVES meeting with you!

      <3 Heather

  15. Melanie Shannon says:

    Mornings just don’t work for me. By the time I get seated my family starts waking up and one by one come in with questions or the TV so I now go out to my car at lunch (Monday-Thursday) and spend time with God then. It is not real easy to spread out with my Bible, MTC & A Confident Heart, my notebook, my scripture memorization note cards, pens, pencils & hightlighters but I am doing ok and enjoying my time. Wishing you all a wonderful weekend filled with His many blessings and an open heart to enjoy them all.

  16. Happy birthday, Melissa!

    And thanks, Heather, for sharing this! I was really convicted by Lysa’s message, “Make God the first thing you consume every morning.” That’s what really launched me into this “Made to Crave” study, even though I’ve already read the book and have been exercising and eating healthfully for more than a year. Sitting down with this plan with my (usually healthy… my husband made oatmeal cookies this morning… shhh!) breakfast every morning, spending that time with God every day has changed everything! Now He’s got His boot in my butt and is pushing me out the door to a women’s thing at my church about creative journaling this weekend, although “women’s thing at my church” and “creative journaling” are enough to make me want to break out in hives. In the three years I’ve been at my church, I haven’t made any women friends there, and I know He’s leading me into that accountability. This is just one more encouragement to stick with it, and some more ideas to try and see what ushers me best into the presence of God!

    • Em,
      Enjoy your “women’s thing” at your church and the “creative journaling”. I have no doubt you will be blessed by the woman at your church. There’s nothing quite like a group of women getting together to grow in faith!

      <3 Heather

  17. Thank you Heather for your very insightful post. What a great reference…

    My quiet time… My quiet time is usually in the evening after I have cooked dinner, have finished the dishes, and have gotten the kids to bed. It’s usually at the kitchen table. I would love to have my quiet time in the morning, but I get up at 5:00 a.m. to exercise before I have to go to work around 7:00. During my exercise time on my elliptical I do watch inspirational TV shows like Joyce Meyer’s. Someday, I know God will allow me quiet time in the morning…

    I want to share what happened during my quiet time this morning. Yes, this morning! I got morning quiet time (don’t have to work today). It was great! When I got out of bed, I stepped on the scale… huge disappointment! My first thought was I’m going to go eat whatever I want that I can find in the kitchen. I made some coffee and decided to sit down and do my daily devotions and scripture reading first. Then, I picked up MTC and decided to work on my study lesson for the day. Something incredible happened. The feelings of failure and frustration disapated, and my strong urge and desires to give in to my unhealthy cravings to binge disappeared! Thanks be to God!! I know in my heart that if I didn’t have my quiet time this morning, I would have walked a very unsteady path of destruction today. Again, praise God for his timing!!

    I just wanted to share that. I feel it’s a little victory in this battle I am waging with food. But God is on my side. I was really craving Him and looking for comfort in Him. So thankful that he led me to Himself right away this morning. I am definitely EMPOWERED for the rest of the day!

    Thanks again, Heather, and a note to Melissa… Hope she has a faYOUblous birthday!

    • Heidi,
      How great is our God that He gives us what we need, right when we need it most?! So glad He met with you this morning to give you the encouragement that you needed!! Blessings on the rest of your day!

      <3 Heather

  18. Thank you so much for sharing this model…I will certainly put use it to improve my quiet time! I enjoyed reading what you shared with us this morning…know that God certainly used you to bless me this morning!

    Happy Birthday Melissa! May God bless you!

  19. Thanks for filling in for Melissa,

    I’m a morning person all the way. While I try to do this daily, I have to admit that there are times that I get off track, but the majority of the time I get up when all is quiet and spend time with God. I’ts how I prepare to face the world out there. It’s how I prepare to battle all the arrows the enemy tries to pierce me with. Sometimes I overcome and sometimes I succumb, but mostly I overcome. It helps build my confidence knowing that I’m covered in prayer and protection. It reminds me to stay alert and not fall into the temptations of the world whatever that may be for the day.

    I’m so glad that I have the Holy Spirit to guide and protect me.

    • Kat,
      I just recently got into mornings and I understand getting off track sometimes. But God is good and YES we are so blessed to have the Holy Spirit working in and through us to guide us to His throne!

      <3 Heather

  20. Great post today. Thank you for reminding us how important a quiet time is and also how to do one. It is a struggle for me to just find the time. I workout at 5:15am every morning so getting up any earlier is not an option. I try to read my devotions while on the train, but it’s a little difficult to have a good prayer/worship time in public. :) I commute 1 1/2 hours twice a day. I have started keeping a devotional next to my bed so at night I can read before I go to bed. But I am encouraged by your post today and the other coments that I can do this. I NEED to do this.
    Have a great day and a blessed weekend!

    • Robin,
      I have faith that You and God will find a good time for the two of you to get away from the world and spend time together. Praying that you find what works for your day! Blessings!

      <3 Heather

  21. Happy Birthday Melissa!!! May you have a wonderful day. Thank you Heather for filling in today with your tapp..

    As I said to Julie (and everyone else) mornings are not my time of day although I do pray before my feet hit the floor thanking God for another day.

    my quiet time- hmm not sure i really have one, I am studying to be a youth minister so most of my day is studying God’s Word anyway. So finding a time to just spend time with God one on one is still being probed and thought about.

    several times I have found my kitchen counter and my laptop not connected to the internet were perfect. other times it was a spare room with a statute of Jesus on the cross and a t.v tray and bible worked. Now I am searching again for a spot that’s “all mine and God’s” .

    As a teen I used to keep a journal and wrote all prayers and answers in it so I could see the presence of God. Now it doesn’t happen. my how I have changed.

    one day recently I asked God as I stood in of all places my bathroom which book he wanted me to read or which study did he want me to read to get closer to him and the only thing I heard was ” The bible is all you need” ( or something similarly close) It literally make me stop in my tracks. Wow I thought. Now I need to work to actually find that quiet time and space to just sit with my father and talk with him and him with me.

    • Debi,
      Good luck as you study to be a youth minister! I’ve been in youth ministry for 6 years now they know how to keep you on your toes!!! Sometimes having just one place to study doesn’t work for us and a change of scenery is what is needed. If moving around works for you, then go for it sister! TAPP, is just one idea, but if you are spending time with Him, in His Word each day, then that’s what really matters most!

      <3 Heather

  22. Thanks Heather
    Great Ideas to improve my quiet time, I also find that the morning works best for me, I love when I am reading and the words just jump off the page and speak encouragement I find if I tried to pray before I go to sleep, I fall asleep in the middle of my prayers.

    I also recently starting praying on my way to work in the car, I am in the car for 20-25 minutes, I speak out loud and pray for my family members and people on my prayer list. It has really helped me grow closer to the Lord, and I am alone with the LORD all the way to work.

  23. Heather ~

    Thank you for sharing! I love my quite time and I too love having a candle there. I do mine in the morning between 5:30am and 7am, but I have been doing it at my office desk at home, which can be distracting……so I lov ehow you said you have a desk for your meeting time with God, so now I have a new home project of creating a new space with a small desk to be just mine & God’s area!!! I really love this!

    Hope you have a blessed day <3 Lauren

    • Lauren,
      For Christmas my husband bought me a small desk from Walmart, it’s nothing too big, just perfect for what I need it for; this way I don’t get tempted to clutter it with “other things.” Each draw has what I need, including one with the P31 magazines and Bible study books. At work I print out devotions and put them in my QT desk to peruse later.

      <3 Heather

  24. I’m doing the 40 days in the Word study right now with my small group. Plus, this study too. We just went over setting up our quiet time with God and tips on how to do it, how not to get distracted, etc etc. So, I’m getting such good information on this right now from multiple sources. I have tried mornings so many times and it just didn’t work for me. My best time is after dinner when kids are off doing their homework. Right now, my husband and I do our studies in our Lazyboy recliners in the family room. But, I’m considering moving into a spare room and really setting up a cozy spot for just me and my very old cat. She now lives in that room by herself (away from two very curious kittens, a dog, kids, etc.). Sounds like a good place for me to get away too!.

  25. Sarah Humes says:

    Because of my work schedule and kid schedules, I struggle with a consistent time. But, on M,W, AndF I do my devotions in my living room. I work on whatever book I’m studying that morning and make sure that I have an idea of application by the time I’m finished. Lately, my two year old, Lydia has been having her Bible study too! :0) She’s got her mini little Bible and a highlighter. I don’t mind that she’s “scribbling” on that Bible though because she’s developing a healthier desire for the Word of God too! One thing that i want to add into my daily time is some worship music. :)

    • Sarah,
      Group Publishing has some great DVDs that have worship music geared for kids with motions and the lyrics at the bottom. Though it may not help you as much, it might be something fun for your and your daughter to do together. How adorable would that be for the two of you to dance and sing praises after studying the Word!

      Group: http://bit.ly/xaa6mO
      Also search for their VBS worship DVDs

      <3 Heather

  26. I love the tapp model as well for tapping into time with god. I too am a person where mornings don’t work because I am a substitute teacher and have a young family. I have been rededicating to a regular quiet time daily. I operate best after breakfast but as a sub that doesn’t always work. So I take my things with me and do it during a prep period or lunch. It is always quiet than for focused prayer, reading, and journaling. And with my bible on my phone I have it wherever I go and have a chance to read various simple devotionals throughout the day. I always end my quiet time with quiet reflection on a verse or phrase that stuck out to me as it gives god a chance to close our time out. If i wind up not getting a break at school I reserve a quiet time after i put my kids to bed. I find that it quiets my mind and body for a restful god filled sleep and I end up with a song in my heart the next morning

    • Charlotte,
      God bless substitute teachers! I always feel bad when I have to call on ours, but at least I know my students will behave {a much as squirrelly middle schoolers can be}. I know that God will bless the times you get to spend with Him, no matter when or where you do that!

      <3 Heather

  27. Dawn Yost says:

    When I worked at a Christian youth camp when I was younger :0), we always had a time right after breakfast that was set aside for morning devos. and it was called God and I time. I really like thinking of it as that, time for God and I to be together, to talk to my “Daddy” and tell Him all about my heart, even though he already knows it, He likes to hear it from me. Kind of like we are with our own kids, we know they did something wrong or right, they’re having a hard time with something or maybe having a great time but we still like to hear it from them! My most convenient God and I time is actually at 4:30am :0( ! ( I know that’s EARLY!) But my husband leaves for work then, my 5 boys are still sound asleep and I know I have at least an hour or usually 2 before I’ll be interrupted with life! I am reading a book right now by Anne Graham Lotz called “Just Give Me Jesus”. It actually is perfect to be reading along with “Made to Crave”! It’s kind of a study on the book of John. Then I spend time in prayer. I do admit some mornings I am just too tired and I end up just going back to sleep but as I continue to read “Made to Crave” I know I need that God and I time more than the extra sleep, so I hope to be more dedicated to it from now on.

    • Dawn,
      Giiiiirl, I have GOT to hand it to you! Getting up at 4:30am AND having 5 boys?! That is amazing! I know those boys are truly blessed to have a mom like you who refreshes her heart each day by diving into His Word!

      <3 Heather

  28. I really like the TAPP idea. I get up at 5am. My coffee is brewed and waiting for me! Last year I read the One Year Chronological Bible. This year I have a one year New Testament book. It has the whole new testament, plus Proverbs, and a thought about the reading, broken up into small daily readings. They have the date on them, which helps keep me on track.

  29. My quiet time seems to work best for me at the end of the day, right before bed. I have a chance to look back on my day and then end my day reading His word. Thanks for sharing these tips, I’m going to try to incorporate more in my quiet time!

  30. Kim Beasley says:

    I spend a lot of time during my day praying and thinking about scripture and my life and my relationship with God. But, I am committing to TAPP, because that intimate one-on-one time is sooo important. And God WANTS us to come to Him and spend time with Him so He can use his supernatural power to bless us abundantly!!
    T = in the evening when I get home from work. I usually spend an hour watching my court shows. But, I think that would be the perfect time for me to unwind with God instead.
    A = I will engage one of my friends to help me with this.
    P = My spare bedroom…I love it in there! It’s small and cozy and quite.
    P = My plan…I have Bible study I want to do that we are following as a church body and that we delve into further in our “connect group”. I have several other areas of study I would like to think and pray about in my quite time.

    Thank you for this post!! It’s helped me get focused and shown me a way to make it happen!

  31. I get up each morning at 5 a.m. to read scripture and work on my Bible study. I sit in our “front room” that is not used much so it is uncluttered and peaceful. I pull the piano bench over to my overstuffed chair and place my Bible, study book, highlighters, pencils and coffee on it. This is my favorite time of day – just me and God!

  32. I love reading all the different ways that busy women find time to spend with God! My God time is a little different. I’m a single mom with three kids (two in college and one still at home) and the mom of two energetic dogs (a poodle and a maltese). I get up at 6:30 EVERY day (rain or shine) to take my dogs for a walk. This is my God time. It’s so peaceful and quiet to see the day dawning while I pour my heart out to Him. I thank Him for a good nights sleep (or not), His creation, my day, my childrens’ day, my family, my work family, my godly girlfriends and anything else He puts on my heart. I cherish this time with Him and I’m getting exercise! I get back home just in time for my daughter to leave for school and I read my devotion while the house is quiet. Most of the time it is God’s answer to what I’ve just prayed for! I live close to my work, so I usually run back home for lunch to take my dogs for a walk around the block and pray for how the day is going. I do the same thing after work to unwind. So my dog time is my God time. D-O-G is G-O-D spelled backwards!

    Also, I love my Proverbs 31 e-mail devotion during the day. It always seems to come at the right time. I spend time after dinner in “my corner of the sofa” either reading (love Karen Kingsbury) or doing a Bible Study. My kids know if my Bible is open, DO NOT DISTURB (unless they are bleeding). I read a quick devotion before bed and I actually sleep with my devotion book under my pillow. I heard Beth Moore say one time that she did this in hopes that God would instill it in her brain!

    • Jona,
      I love how your family respects your time with God {unless bleeding occurs}. I remember Beth saying that too!! I think it was in her Believing God study {I <3 that one!}.

      <3 Heather

  33. I start my day at 7 a.m. with coffee and my devotional. I read the Bible verses suggested and then the commentary on it. I journal and pray. Then I look for the “Encouragement for Today” online devotions and for what Lysa has to share each day. I am always sharing these with friend and family that I am praying for. I usually do this at my kitchen table in the winter months, on the sun porch in warmer weather. I’ve been thinking of getting up earlier because my 18 yr old is up and about by then. I am now thinking of changing the location. I appreciate all that you shared and your many suggestions. I am thinking of several that will work well for me. And can’t wait to add them to my time alone with God.

    • Jeanette,
      The P31 devos are always so wonderful! I know they work hard to edit them and send out something that is not only encouraging, but brings us closer with God.

      <3 Heather

  34. Thank you Heather for the TAPP! I first read it in Wendy Blights study. You were her guest one day and let me tell you what a blessing it was. I since that day have been so blessed with that information you gave us. I have had a wonderful quiet time with the LORD! What an inspiration you are and thanks once again for the spiritual nuggets. HAPPY BIRTHDAY MELISSA AND HAVE A WONDERFUL WEEKEND LOTS OF HUGS AND LOTS OF BLESSINGS!!!!!!!

    • Bea,
      Hey there girl! I’m glad to “see” you here too! I am just so excited to hear that your TAPP is going so well! I’ll see you around the Hebrews study :)

      <3 Heather

  35. perfers not to leave name says:

    thank you for this! to all the ladies who have prayed for me…THANK YOU!!! It has been a super rough week but God has spoken. Pray that I would make the move in the right direction and OBEY! again, THANK YOU…I need them badly!

  36. Thank you for the advice on TAPP. Love having a quiet time to dedicate to God. Lately I have not been doing so good but will follow TAPP and do it every morning. The best time and a great way to start the day.

    • Sandy,
      Just remember to make your TAPP something that works for you and God, these are just helpful suggestions and not rules. Enjoy your time with God, He will bless your socks off girl!!

      <3 Heather

  37. I absoutely love to do TAPP time outside. We have a picnic table in our back yard…a mercury light near by for those darker mornings when the sun is a little slow about getting up. It is wonderful, when all you hear is creation around you and you can take in a scripture and just let it sink to your inner being. The Bible, a pad and pen, and my best friend. What more could a girl want!

  38. Right now I try to fit in in where I can, while nursing I can read the P31 devos on my ipod, while my kids finish breakfast or lunch I can read other devotionals or the Bible, and during nap time I can spend time in prayer. I know if I go to bed earlier getting up earlier would be easier and hearing about all you dedicated 4:50-5:00 ladies I’m motivated to put forth more effort to leave my cozy bed so I have a dedicated time with God. I do love the small nuggets that keep me going through the day.

    • Emily,
      Since I don’t have any children right now, it’s easier for me to set aside times without any distraction. I love how you refresh yourself through His Word throughout the day in little nuggets, I have no doubt they add up fast! Blessings to you as you set aside some morning time to be alone with the Lord and if your precious children interrupt you with their needs, don’t worry!! God has given them to you as a gift and will help you carve out time later in the day if needed. Blessings to you and your family :)!

      <3 Heather

  39. My quiet time revealed something to me and I wanted to share. It backs up Lysa’s statement we were made for more” . I found myself scanning up to Eph 1:11 it says we had been foreordained (chosen and appointed before hand). then if you word search chosen here’s what you will see ( from biblegateway)

    In Jer 1:5 it says – “Before I formed you in the womb I knew (and approved of you ( as my chosen) separated and set you apart consecrating you ..”

    and finally in 1 Peter 1:2
    who were chosen and foreknown by God the Father and consecrated (sanctified , made holy) by the spirit to be obedient to Jesus Christ ( the Messiah) and to be sprinkled with (his) blood. May grace (spiritual blessing)and peace be given you in increasing abundance ( that spiritual peace to be realized in and through Christ FREEDOM FROM FEARS agitating passions and moral conflicts. ”
    Emphasis was mine with the freedom, so I could really see it/ grasp it.

    so as you can see we are made for more the above scripture say so.

  40. Annette Davidson says:

    Thank you Heather for these words. I will definitely really give my quiet time some deep thought to select the time that I know I can spend uninterrupted studying God’s Word and praying. This is so important in not only growing closer to God but also in our spiritual growth. Also a Happy Birthday to Melissa!
    Blessings,

  41. Amy Bleich says:

    My quiet time – that would be my ideal, or my reality? My ideal is this beautiful scene of me sitting quietly with the Bible open in my lap as the sun streams over my shoulder and warms my cup of tea. My reality – whenever I can, wherever I can, however I can! But working hard at making it a more structured time so that I don’t miss this special time with my Father.

    • Amy,
      LOL, different seasons of live allow for different kinds of TAPP. I was always a “throughout the day” kinda girl, reading and praying whenever I wanted to, but I started wanted more. Being refreshed throughout the day is wonderful and I still do that, but there’s just something about setting aside a time to be exclusively with the Lord. Praying you find what works for you and the Lord!

      <3 Heather

  42. Thanks for the post, Heather. And Happy BIrthday to Melissa!

    My quiet time usually happens at a couple of times during the day. Lately I have been getting up a bit before the kids and am reading through a Bible study book all about the Cross..60 lessons focussing on the work accomplished there. (by Mike Cleveland and Setting Captives Free ministry) It has opened my eyes more fully to the wonder of my salvation and all Jesus did! We serve a wonderful Savior!

    Then at some point I sit down at the kitchen table to do a lesson out of MTC or my other study, “Trusting God, Even When Life Hurts”. Timing depends on my little ones. But my days definitely run more smoothly if I have had the morning quiet time.

    I like the idea of having a specific place just for doing devotions. I will have to think on that some. Right now my kitchen table works out the best.

    I do need to work on being a more faithful prayer warrior. I like to pray while I drive, or practice memory verses.

    Julia G

  43. Heather,
    I read your guest post on WendyBlight.com earlier in January and decided then to try and spent quiet time in the mornings after getting 2 out of 3 kids on the bus. I have found that it has worked out better than I thought it would. I still find that I sometimes have to move things around a little because my youngest son doesn’t always want me to have quiet time with God that early. Sometimes that means my quiet time comes in the shower praying and then later sitting down and actually reading my devotionals and working on my bible studies. I started writing a prayer journal that includes praises to God and how He is working in my life in so many different ways that I normally would not notice, hoping that would help also. While I am staying in God’s Word each day, I do not always write in my journal. I was surprised at how much I wanted to write and how much time it involved and the blessings that it has provided in just a few weeks. Thank you very much for this timely post, it reminds me that I need get back to writing daily in my journal as part of my quiet time. Happy Birthday, Melissa! Have a great weekend!

    • Becky,
      I’m so glad to hear things are going well with your QT Becky! Praying that you will get a chance to journal when you want to. Some people find it easier to type their journal. I have a couple of friends who made a blog for themselves to use for journaling, they made them completely private, so no one in the world can read the journal, except themselves. If you’re a fast typer, that might be an option :) and I can help you set it up if you decide to go that route :).

      <3 Heather

  44. Kathy Scott says:

    It is so important for me to start the day reading the Word and going through a book called, The Morning Revival. It has changed my way of greeting the day with God as my focus. I try to memorize scripture that is also pertinent to the lesson I am reading. God’s Word nourishes my spirit and keeps me attuned to His presence. By applying the living Word throughout the day, I can find spiritual refreshment and victory in difficult situations. If there is some significant verse or inspiration I receive, I write it down in my journal to cement its meaning for later reading.
    Thank you for your insights you wrote to keep me diligently applying God’s Word each day. It encourages me and others who read your post to TAPP daily!

  45. I enjoy time after hubby goes to work and before the kids get up. We homeschool so once life starts, it gets going FAST and furious!
    I have used the same Bible reading plan for the past 3 yrs. It is in category form. Mondays are history, Tuesdays psalms, etc. On the suggestion of my pastor, I am using different translations each year to keep it fresh. My memory time is also based on our Pastor’s method. He takes the first letter of each word and puts them into groups. Then you can almost “read” the passage. We are memorizing whole books during SS but I’ve been working on James at home. I also have index cards all over the kitchen cupboards with my current memory verse! LOL!

    • Julie,
      WOW!! I just love how you go through the Bible each year and switch out the translations and you memorize whole books! I think that is just wonderful!! Do you have a translation that you have liked the best so far?

      <3 Heather

  46. Jennifer R says:

    So glad to read ur words today Heather. I like that TAPP model and of course it spoke to my heart and some problems I have been going thru this past couple of weeks so know that God used u today! Happy Birthday Melissa!

    • Jennifer,
      Praying for God’s peace to wash over you and that He would provide for what is needed in your life. I also pray that you would be blessed beyond measure as you spend time with God each day!

      <3 Heather

  47. Thank you for the encouraging post today. I have been working on this and am having a better daily time. I appreciate your suggestions.

  48. Actually, my quiet time is not really what it should be most days. I do spend time every night before bed. I read through my devotional and say a prayer. I do spend time in my online Bible studies, and I have a Friday night Bible study. I do what I can, and I am always trying to find better ways to do it.

  49. My TAPP looks like this:
    Time – throughout the day
    Accountability – do not have a person for this but praying for one
    Place – at home and work.
    Plan – several devotionals, reading bible and/or biblical based books, meditating, reciting scripture and nuggets of truth!

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