2 Chronicles 18:23-24 “Then Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah came near, and smote Micaiah upon the cheek, and said, Which way went the Spirit of the LORD from me to speak unto thee? And Micaiah said, Behold, thou shalt see on that day when thou shalt go into an inner chamber to hide thyself.”
In this technological age, we seem to know nothing of how to exist without stimuli.
Watch those around you and even check yourself – how many times in a day do we look at our phones, type on our computers, watch programs, movies, podcasts, listen to music, and bombard our minds with such things and crowd out God?
God tells us:
Psalm 46:10 “Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.”
The ability to quiet ourselves and focus is a lost practice, especially among God’s children. Our ability to wake up early; to set ourselves to meet with God in some semblance of ‘quality’ time; to take the time to pray before we start each day has been replaced with a splash of water on our face, a quick cup of coffee, and maybe a bite to eat before we dash off into our day.
Prayer is one of the very first things to go in the busyness of the child of God’s life. Satan makes sure of it. Our enemy knows that our connectedness to our Power Source is vital to our survival. Samuel Chadwick wrote a small but powerful book called; “The Path of Prayer.” In it, he states:
“All true prayer, the prayer that prevails, is personal, intimate, and original.”
“Prayers are measured neither by time or number, but by intensity.”
To have such intensity takes energy and focus. Eliminating external stimuli and concentrating on the One to whom we are speaking becomes a task with which many are unfamiliar.
Far too many of us have so much that comes at us in a day, it is a wonder how we process it all. We spend long hours each week and work so hard; we need vacations to regroup, recharge, and revitalize our life. Before we realize it, we quickly dive right back into the fray of what brought such an extreme need in the first place.
As a child growing up in the city, seeing the stars at night was unimpressive. But my first night camping away from the city lights, opened my eyes to the expanse of the night sky and a world of beauty only seen in the stillness of nature.
It takes a concerted effort on our part to not only be still, quiet, and focused. It takes character and determination to carry out the desire to meet with God daily.
The prophet Micaiah prophesied the destruction and death to Ahab as the two kings; Ahab and Jehoshaphat sat to counsel whether or not to go to war. Prior to that, a group of prophets told the king to go up to battle and he would win.
The New Testament church today needs to be a place of balance between the business of evangelization, edification, and sustenance of the body and personal, intimate, fellowship with God. You cannot have the first without the latter. You may try, but then it becomes empty work FOR God instead of the right work is done WITH God.
If we are bought with a price, then we should give over the running of our life to the owner.
Elijah sought God. He listened for His voice.
1 Kings 19:11-13 “And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the LORD. And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice. And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave. And, behold, there came a voice unto him, and said, What doest thou here, Elijah?”
Elijah was in the wrong place, trying to do the right thing. His exhaustion and self-pity took him. He finally was able to get alone and hear the voice of the Lord to guide him once again to the place God wanted him to be.
Throughout my career, I have had to find somewhere in my workplace where I could get away, be quiet, and allow God to speak to my heart. Finding that place at work does not take place for me getting with God in the morning.
Long ago, my mentor challenged me to get alone with God; to covet that time, and form a bond and relationship that is strong. To the best of my ability, I have tried to keep and maintain my walk with God in the still and quiet of an early morning.
That bond and relationship were formed through the reading of God’s Word, meditating, discussing it with God, and prayer. Far too many of us talk AT God and fail to communicate WITH God. Being still affords the opportunity.
God promises that if we come to Him, He will draw nigh unto us.
James 4:7-8 “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.”
When we do our part, God keeps His. In my submission, the devil must flee. When I draw night to God, he draws nigh unto me.
Take the time to reshuffle and reorganize and put God at the forefront. Give Him the preeminence.
Colossians 1:18 “And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.”