|But Elijah said to her, ‘Don’t be afraid! Go ahead and do just what you’ve said, but make a little bread for me first. Then use what’s left to prepare a meal for yourself and your son.’” 1 Kings 17:13 (NLT)|
|Another morning trudging out of bed with an unfinished to-do list still haunting me from two days ago, I manage to stop hitting the snooze button and begin my day, hoping it will be more productive than yesterday.|
The sounds of toy blocks clicking together and little feet running through the kitchen tell me all three kids are up and hungry. Here we go, I think, anticipating another fast-paced morning.
Guilt creeps in when I tell myself I should’ve gotten up an hour earlier to spend time with God and enjoy coffee with my husband.
Then suddenly, just before I let those feelings define my mood, I’m reminded of the mother in 1 Kings 17:13 who was asked to put God first — in a much more desperate situation. Amidst a drought, with only enough food left for one more meal, she was asked to feed the man of God first. Imagine her thoughts … How could I possibly feed him first, when we’re in need as well?
Perhaps you’ve never had to make such a decision about food, but how about your time, feeling like you have zero extra minutes to spare? With all that’s going on today, how could I possibly spend time with God first? It can seem challenging to grow in your relationship with Christ when life is so demanding.
As Elijah instructed, though, “… do just what you’ve said, but make a little bread for me first” (1 Kings 17:13b).
God isn’t asking us to abandon our responsibilities. He just wants a little time with us first. That can be morning, midday or evening.
“First” is a posture of the heart, not a time of the day. Just as the woman was abundantly blessed after obeying Elijah’s request, we’ll be so enriched when we push through the fear of not having enough time and just give God our best. Some days that’s tougher than others, so here are three ideas to help set your gaze on the Father when you only have a few minutes (and sometimes less!) between the calm and the chaos:
Start with Scripture. For whatever season of life you’re in right now, there’s a verse that will speak to your needs. Find that verse, and put it on your nightstand or bathroom mirror (or any place you’ll see regularly). Psalm 1:2 instructs us to meditate on God’s Word day and night. When the moment isn’t long enough to fully dive in, even just a snippet of God’s Word can give us the courage we need to walk in grace and Love.
Before going to bed at night (or before you leave for the day if you have time with God in the evenings), place a journal, a pen, and your Bible nearby. Sometimes I don’t use any of these as I make my way from my blanket to my bathroom, but having them within arm’s reach gives me the freedom to jot down any prayer topics or Scriptures that come to mind before a million other thoughts do. You can revisit them later when you have a moment to yourself.
Worship and declare.
When there’s not a lot of time, I try to find a quiet place to simply worship God and express gratitude. In a brief prayer, we can strengthen ourselves in the Lord, like David did in 1 Samuel 30:6.
We can speak life over our day and declare peace over our homes. Take just a minute to partner with God and proclaim victory for your loved ones as you each begin the day!Connecting with God, even for just a moment, can make all the difference in your spirit. Whether that’s early in the morning or during a lunch break, give Him a little time “first,” and be encouraged for what the day may bring.Lord, I know when I connect with You, You give me godly energy to keep going. You’ve entrusted me with certain responsibilities, and I’m better at them when I’m closer to You. Help me prioritize You in my life every day. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.