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July is over and we are weeks away from our daughter going back to school. I can’t believe summer is almost over already! As usual, it has been such a whirlwind of work, fun, and just life it has flown by. I’m sure you can relate to feeling busy all the time, and its easy to let life happen instead of orchestrating it by design when you are overwhelmed.
Something I have been focusing on lately is nurturing and growing my faith. Life has brought many storms to my doorstep in the past couple of years, and having my faith to cling to is the only thing that kept me upright sometimes.
We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 2 Cor 4:8-9
Its so easy to get caught up in the business of life and forget what our God-given purpose is. Or, if you are like me, you may still be seeking to discover what that purpose is! Since I have been making an intentional effort to make my faith a priority and spend time daily in Bible reading and prayer, a strange thing has happened. The storms are still there, but my boat rocks a little less. The worries are certainly still there, but instead of making myself sick over them I spend time in prayer over them.
I believe that God desires us to live abundantly, and certainly not cowering in fear of every wave that life throws at us. I have made some intentional steps to ground my life in my faith, and they may help you to get on the right track, too.
Read The Bible Daily
I don’t believe in legalism, so I’m not trying to say you HAVE to read your Bible every day or you aren’t a good Christian. But God’s word is not only the primary way he speaks to us, its also a part of the full armor of God that he has given us to go into spiritual battle. Whether you read one verse, or several chapters, open the Word of God and meditate on it.
I find using a daily devotion is the best format for my daily reading. She Reads Truth is the one that I read every morning in my quiet time. The last study they did was on the Acts of the Apostles and was seriously life-changing for me. I had read all of those passages and stories before, but through this study they leapt off the page to me like never before.
Gracefully Truthful is another site that features devotions and studies geared towards women, and seeks to create an online community of women desperate to grow closer to God. The site is brand new, and one of my good friends from high school is a founding member. You can opt to have a daily word sent to your email, or browse the site for testimonies and devotions from women with all kinds of backgrounds.
The YouVersion Bible App has COUNTLESS studies and reading plans. Want to read the Bible in a year? There is a plan for you. Want to read a Veggie Tales devotion? There is a plan for you. This is the only Bible app on my phone, and I love how easy it is to go straight to God’s word, and then share on social media platforms.
Pray Without Ceasing
Prayer is a spiritual area where I am admittedly weak. I have little conversations with God here and there all day, but when I truly sit down to have a deep and meaningful time with God, my mind has endless squirrel moments. Is that water I hear running? I have to remember to put tofu on my grocery list. Oh look, a Facebook notification!
A tool that has immensely helped me stay on track in my prayer habits, is keeping a journal. I have a free printable you can print and add to a binder to start your own, or you can just pull out a notebook and start writing. It can be as complex or as simple as you make it. I just jot down requests and use them as a prompt. I recently read about someone having a requests AND a thankful list, and that is something I want to incorporate into my journal.
Stay In Community With Strong Believers
It is so important to have community with other believers to encourage you in your faith, but I am NOT talking about going to church. As a matter of fact, after several very bad experiences, I don’t attend church. I hope to some day find an actual building to attend locally, but for now I watch messages on Life.Church.
I am fortunate to have a lot of friends, mostly bloggers, who are great women of God and encourage me on a daily basis. Whenever a trial comes up in my life, I know that I can count on them for sage advice and prayer. We may be states away from each other, but through modern technology and social media we are able to maintain frequent contact and stay in community from afar.
As a busy mom it can be hard to find the time to really my faith first. But I believe that if we are faithful in our priorities, which means faith first, that God will bless and reward that. Do you have some tips for keeping faith first in your busy life?