I started a new daily routine. My hours at work changed and made my day begin several hours earlier. This made a catastrophic change to my life. Instead of getting up at 5:30a and having time with Father - then getting ready for work - I now had to get up at 3:30a and leave in an hour for work. The thought of doing anything earlier than that was not something I could get to even enter my mind! Many times I would find myself awake at that hour - but rarely did I have to actually be alert and functioning.
So, I found myself not taking time to sit with Father before work. Instead- I found a new thing! I take out the old iPhone, dock it into the radio system in my car and listen to the audio Bible - dramatic version of course - for the 45 minute ride to work. For the last few months I've been thinking "problem solved" - but lately I've had to admit to myself that doing it the multi-tasking way is not the same at all. I didn't start wandering down streets of sin and degradation - but I did find myself living with more stress, more anxiety and flat out worry. It was just enough to make me sit on tilt.
As I talked to Father about it - I feel He helped me understand that popping in a device and listening to the Word while I drive does not afford me a way to focus on Him - attention undivided. When I drive - my mind has to be on other things at the same time. I might not hear when He speaks to me or feel His arms wrap around my spirit in reassurance - and I walk away having not been refreshed in His presence.
Also, it is kind of like carving out time to be with a friend you are crazy about. But, as you sit together and share personal details about your lives - your friend's gaze and focus keeps getting diverted to every other thing happening around you. Makes you feel like you and what you have to share are just not that important. I can imagine our Father feels that way when all we have to offer Him is time we've also scheduled to do something else.
Popping in the audio Bible in the car is great. More Word in any form can't be all bad. It just shouldn't be all we have in communion with our God. There are no cars or televisions in the secret place.
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.” Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the perilous pestilence. He shall cover you with His feathers, And under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler.
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, nor of the arrow that flies by day, nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness, nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday. A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; but it shall not come near you. Only with your eyes shall you look, and see the reward of the wicked.
Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge, even the Most High, your dwelling place, no evil shall befall you, nor shall any plague come near your dwelling; For He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways. In their hands they shall bear you up, lest you dash your foot against a stone. You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra, the young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot. “Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name. He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him, and show him My salvation.” NKJV
No matter what life demands constrain us - we have to make time to sit with Father -.a time we don't do anything else except focus on Him. His Word says that we are not to live by bread alone - but by every Word that comes from His mouth. We have to be in a position to hear Him. And the peace of His all-enveloping presence will replace the stress and anxiety that comes from just living in our world.
Several years ago I penned a song that depicts the secret place. Although I do believe every person has an individual secret place - it is between God and His child- there are some things about it that are the same with everyone.
The Secret Place
In the secret place with Jesus
I will worship Him
I will praise Him
He expresses love to my spirit
In the secret place of the Most High
And I will dwell in the Holy of Holies
No greater place would I rather be
Far above all earthly dimension
In the secret place
Jesus and I
Donna D Brown
Watch for an exclusive review of a new CD release from local artist Lester Estelle. It is titled Seasons. Take a look, give a listen and add it to your library!