How To Make Time for God When Life Gets Busy

Wake up. Eat. Get ready. Go.

Some of us don’t even have time to eat.

The how to of this post isn’t going to be just another lecture on waking up ten minutes earlier or setting your Bible on your pillow so you have to read it before falling asleep.

I’ve had times where my schedule has been jam-packed and I’ve also had times where my mornings were free.

 

How To Make Time for God When Life Gets Busy

And on those days where my time was open, the excuse of busyness fell flat. And I still didn’t make time for God.

Why don’t we read our Bibles more? Why don’t we sit down and fervently pray more?

We have been convinced that we don’t need to. We have learned to rely on ourselves in the day to day.

I didn’t realize how essential devoted time with God was until I started devoting consistent time surrendering my heart to my Savior.

I was blessed with a time where busyness faded and quiet ensued. My schedule allowed for flexibility and my mornings were open.

And what did I do? I slept in. I went for runs. I met friends for coffee. All good things.

But finally, my excuse of busyness was gone and still, I filled my schedule.

I thought I could make it. I thought I was okay.

But the stress of trying to manage my heart became too much. I was wearing thin.

So after running out of steam, I started sitting down and surrendering each morning. And I haven’t stopped.

Yes, sometimes it is the discipline that carries me through. But there is one thing that has become so essential to this consistent time with God.

Motivation.

My motivation had always been to check it off my list. I’d never really felt changed or inspired after reading my Bible each morning. I knew it was important, so I tried. But my motivation never grew past my mind to settle into my heart.

How do we discover the deep and pressing desire to spend time with the Lord each day?

Pray

We have to pray and continue praying for the desire to keep coming back.

You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. -Jeremiah 29:13

A heart fully surrendered is a heart open to transformation.

A heart fully surrendered is a heart open to transformation. Click To Tweet

When we ask God for the desire to be with Him, He hears our prayer. When we continue to ask Him, He will answer.

We must also pray to delight in the Lord. When we spend time with Him, getting to know Him intimately, naturally, we will begin to delight in Him.

The Lord is all-powerful and just, all-merciful and forgiving. He is the creator of all things and we can’t help but delight in Him when we get to know Him.

Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart. -Psalm 37:4

Pray for that desire. Seek that delight. This is the first step to developing the motivation to spend time with the Lord each and every day.

Plan

It wasn’t until I committed to reading through the New Testament that I found a way to keep it up.

Before I would sit down with my heavy Bible in my lap and think - where to begin today?

Sometimes, I'd choose something random, and sometimes try reading through a specific book.

But eventually, I’d finish that and not know where to go next. And as inspired and changing as flipping to a random page and reading can be, that only lasts for so long.

A plan is so essential. I now sit down each morning and know exactly where I’m opening my Bible to. On busy days I open and just read one or two chapters. On days with more time, I read several.

When I finished the New Testament, I went to the Old.

I also created a prayer journal. Inspired by the movie, War Room.

Lacking a closet to clear out, I created a journal where I could sit down and go to Lord in prayer.

This journal accompanies me almost every morning. It has prayers that I pray daily, Scriptures that I speak to the Lord, and a list of requests and praises.

Having a plan when it comes to spending time with the Lord, creates an openness for our souls to reach out and the Lord to reach back.

When we don’t have to sit down and draw up a plan each morning, we are more likely to develop a motivation that lasts.

When we don’t have to sit down and draw up a plan each morning, we are more likely to develop a… Click To Tweet

I encourage you to find a Bible reading plan, buy a Bible study or choose to read through the New Testament or the Old.

It begins with commitment. It continues with desire. It holds fast with discipline.

Surrender

The biggest roadblock to a heart that desires to spend time with the Lord, is the reluctance to surrender.

When we surrender, we allow God to enter into our hearts. When we slow down and release control, we learn to trust the One who is truly in control.

If you are trying to spend time with God each day to check it off your list, you are still holding onto control.

When we grasp at control, we wear our hearts thin.

The day-to-day may seem controllable. But we’ve all experienced a moment where something devastating has ripped away that sense of control.

We’ve all had the choice of what to do when our lives were out of control.

We’ve all experienced a moment where something devastating has ripped away that sense of… Click To Tweet

I encourage you to surrender your heart, every part of it, to the Lord.

It isn’t easy. And it doesn’t happen all at once.

It has taken me years to slowly release my grasp on the painful parts of my past.

And some of them, I’m still working on.

But as I’ve surrendered my heart, I’ve learned to delight in the One who cares so deeply for every pain in my past.

As I’ve surrendered my heart, I’ve found peace, hope and joy that keeps me coming back.

A heart surrendered is a heart at peace.

What is keeping you from total surrender?

If you aren’t sure, ask the Lord to reveal it to you.

He will. And as you work to surrender, you will find healing.

Time with God each day can be the most beautiful and delightful time of your day.

I encourage you to seek that out this week. I encourage you to begin praying for that desire and delight in the Lord.

What has helped you to delight in the Lord? What have you done to cultivate the desire to spend time with God each day?

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Comments 24

  • Nicole, There is so much wisdom here. I can relate to every bit of what you shared about setting aside time with God. It is not an easy thing to do and it is a constant struggle to pull away from the checklist and drive-ahead mentality that I have. I found that having a quiet time plan with steps to walk through really changed things for me. And then I just made myself remember the fact that I needed to do my quiet time first thing each morning no matter what. When I could not do that, I would try to go back in the evening. I also learned that negative self talk over myself for my own failures did not do a bit of good. Now, I give myself grace and just keep starting over the next day and a steady habit has been developed in my life over time such that I wake up looking forward to my time in prayer and the Word. I loved this post, Nicole. Thank you for speaking so beautifully from your heart. 💜

    • Giving ourselves grace is a lesson I’ve been learning as well! Thanks for sharing and for your encouragement, Leslie!

  • These are great tips! I think we often overlook prayer! Prayer is something we can do anytime anywhere no matter what else we are doing.

    • I’m so grateful that God is always with us! What a blessing that we can pray anywhere! Thanks, Anne!

  • I have to say the best time with God is when I am in a vehicle. I know that sounds silly but I am in my truck a lot. I wait outside my son’s school to drop him off or pick. I wait in traffic or at red lights. I sit waiting for a store to open or just to have lunch. It seems the best time to really connect. I think if you can plan that is great but I have found to use the time I have when I have it.

    • YES, Liz. We spend so much time in our cars. What a great opportunity to surrender our hearts to the Lord. 🙂

  • I agree – having a plan is extremely helpful. Bible studies can be helpful, too. Sometimes I like following something on my own, though. I also thrive on a consistent schedule, and this phase of life with tweens and teens has been more difficult for me. It’s hard for me to develop and keep a consistent schedule when all of my kids are on different schedules. And since I homeschool, I don’t have all of that time when they are gone. My goal this summer is to come up with a better and more consistent life schedule that I can stick to regardless of what my kids’ schedules are.

    Thanks for linking up with Literacy Musing Mondays! Have a blessed week.

    • It can definitely be SO hard to have a consistent schedule when life is changing so quickly! I’m glad you’re working towards one, Brandi! Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  • Hello Nicole. Such a wise, thoughtful post. This is how I put your three points into action: 1) I pray when I am in the car alone, every time. It’s my cue to pray. 2) I read my One Year Bible each morning…it’s a plan I’ve used for the past 15 years, and nothing else has transformed my life more. 3) I am learning that I put way too much value on my productivity. I surrender my days to him, using the evenings to reflect on how much I accomplished (even if it was “just” spending time with my children) and letting go of what didn’t get finished. Visiting from #raralinkup today.

    • I love hearing how you’ve taken action, Sarah! After all, we must be doers and not merely hear! Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  • I know for me the habit of doing it first thing in the morning has helped and having a certain place I go where I meet God.

    I too am a check off kind of girl. I have to admit over the last month I got out of the habit of meeting regularly with God. I let busyness and the lie I would get to it later get in the way. So lately when I meet with him, I feel rushed to get through it instead of truely surrendering my heart to him.

    Your post came at just the right time. Thank you! I am missing that wonderful connection of just hanging out with GOD. I am going to need to ask him today what is getting in the way.

    I also used to set aside a designated amount of time. I think that worked well because It would allow me time to just linger with God.

    Time to get back on track.

    • Seeking to understand what is at the root of not spending time with Him is so important. Thanks for sharing your heart, Maree. Great to hear from you!

  • Nicole,
    As I was reading your wonderful post, I thought to myself, why do I have to ask God to give me the desire to spend time with Him….isn’t that kind of pathetic? You would think after all these years I would jumping at the opportunity to spend time with Him in His word, yet some days I am less than motivated. I realize that the enemy of my soul is always tempting me with something ” more important” or “better” to be doing. Yet, I KNOW that when I spend time with the Lord, my day gets off to the right start. I agree that having a Plan is crucial and we must come with a surrendered heart or it is just checking off an item on our to do list. Great reminders here. Also, I loved in Lancaster County for 8 years – love that part of the country except when you get caught behind a manure truck on a country two lane road lol.
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

    • That temptation of the enemy is powerful if we don’t recognize it. I’m so glad that you have recognized it and want to take a stand! And great to hear of another Lancaster county gal! I love it here 🙂

  • This is so true and so easy to forget. Thank you for writing from the heart and helping us to remember that surrender is the best place to start. Visiting from #LMMLinkup today 🙂

  • You can pray anytime you want. In saying that, I’ve had experienced God giving me time for Him because I prayed for Him to. Thank you for writing this. I will be sharing this on my Facebook profile.

    • Thanks for sharing it, Ashton! And yes, as we seek the Lord, He will grow in us the desire to spend time with Him!

  • Planning truly is essential to finding (making) time for the Lord in the midst of our busy society. Every Sunday, I sit and plan out the week, including what to read. I also have a prayer journal, which has revolutionalized my prayer life! Makes all the difference! Blessings!

  • “The day-to-day may seem controllable. But we’ve all experienced a moment where something devastating has ripped away that sense of control.” This is so true; and I think in most lives. I want my morning to be surrendered to God! How beautiful!

  • So beautifully written. I agree that thr experience of surrendering our hearts fully to God allows Him to work in us and give us that immense peace. It is the desire for Him to do it again that Spurs us on to make a way for it to happen.

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