Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Let's Put an End to 'Quiet Times'

Ah, did I grab your attention?

Are you a little concerned for my relationship with God, based on the title of this post?
Thanks. You're a good friend.
But there is no need to be concerned.

It's just that recently I have been having more conversations with moms, and I am convinced that mothers of young children just can't have 'Quiet Times.' Unless they get up really early, and then they're prone to being grumpy all day. And what good is that?
Anyway, early rising doesn't always mean quiet and uninterrupted time.
Mommy? Is that you? Can I get up now, too?

Been there?

I listened to a very discouraged friend bemoaning her lack of quiet times the other day. But we talked about the fact that God loves us and can speak to us - even when our surroundings are noisy. We can enjoy His presence - even in the midst of chaos. We can hide His Word in our heart (or our pocket!) and meditate on it anytime.
It doesn't need to be quiet, and we don't need to be sitting alone on the couch in order for our time with God to be meaningful.

And that's when I decided I wanted to encourage moms to quit having 'Quiet Times.'

Let's call it 'Fellowship with God' and let's do it all day long!

When the baby is crying, when the dog is barking, when the kids are arguing, when the dishes need washing and the floor needs sweeping - in every moment of every day, whether we can hear the crickets chirping, or not, let's enjoy the presence of our heavenly Father. Let's seek to hear His voice through the noise, and let's allow Him to love us wherever we may be.

Having said that, I must also say that I understand the very real need for times of silence and solitude. (And I don't mean only when you're sleeping!) God often tells us to be quiet and rest in Him. Because He knows we need it.
BUT, if you are in a season when the majority of your time is noisy I want you to be encouraged to know your fellowship with God does not need to come to an end. He has not changed. He is still good. And He is still present.
May you find hope in these truths today.



luvmy4sons said...

Oh...well said and great advice. God is everywhere and in everything. Practicing His presence always and not feeling guilty or stressed at not having a set aside quiet moment with Him is great advice! As always thanks for your encouragement to mothers! Love ya!

Patricia/NYC said...

So true!! And it's during those noisy chotic times when I need Him most!! ;)

O Mom said...

Yes I don't know how they know you are getting up earlier without them, it's like they ahve little radars that go off whenever Mom is out of range!
You are such a great encourager, thank you!!!

km said...

I think my last "quiet time" was New Year's Eve. I'm scheduling one where I have have an extended day away right now. But I have to settle for my 15 min...and it's not always quiet...with my coffee most days. To keep me going...I listen to praise music all day long. Because...if I wake up earlier...my kids get up earlier. It is best for us all to get a bit more sleep.

Irritable Mother said...

Leslie - Yes, because I don't think He wants guilt and stress to be the things which motivate us to seek His presence.

Patricia - Which is why I'm so glad He can speak through the noise!

O Mom - And I think it's those radars which will transfer to US when they're older and out too late. *grin*

KM - I love those scheduled times away. There is a retreat center near me which I have visited a few times. What a good thing that is - no kids, no phone, no computer, no nothin' except me and God. Ahhhh!

gianna said...

I LOVE this post! Have you read Tender Mercies for the Mothering Soul (or something like that) by Angela Thomas Guffey (or Guffey Thomas--boy, this is getting to be ridiculous. You can tell I have a true mommy brain!)
She talks about this EXACT thing. I need to read that book again. I think you can resonate with her.
Thank you for your encouragement. I love you, Karen, ye who is so wise and humble!

Ronel Sidney said...

Great post!!! Love it!! I do love my quiet time but recently took the time to hide scripture all over the house; in the kitchen cabinets, on bathroom mirrors and on doors so that when I don't have a chance to have quiet time I can find peace in His word all around my house.

Irritable Mother said...

Gianna - Yes, a friend sent me that book several years ago. And I do remember really liking it!
*sigh* Wishing I felt wise more often.
Love you!

Ronel - I love my quiet times, too. Need them!
But I remember the days when they just were.not.possible. and I felt so disconnected from God. Wish I had understood then that He is in the midst of it ALL.

Leah @ Point Ministries said...

A VERY good word, my friend. We all need to fellowship with Him all through the day.


Sara K. said...

Wow! I didn't know anyone else whose kids' "radar" went off if mom got up early for a quiet time -- until now! We really like our rambler-style house, but these accursed hardwood floors squeak with every footstep. So if we try to leave our bedroom, my son is up! But oh, I do love a morning "time with God" (TWG) -- before the kids rise -- I *need* that time, otherwise I'm a grizzly bear... a growling ball of selfishness with no perspective. So I now have my TWG in my bedroom in the morning! I have a basket next to my bed with my Bible, journal, and other devotionals I reference. Part of my success is not putting a time standard on my TWG (i.e. you haven't done enough unless it's two hours! kidding, of course). But I really desire to *remember* to seek God throughout the day... That's why I think it would be helpful to go back to the WWJD bracelet days! Although I'd probably stop noticing the bracelet after a short time...

Irritable Mother said...

Leah - That's right. No matter who we are, or what our station in life - We NEED HIM!

Sara - It's good to find ways to make it work. You go, girl! *grin*

Angie Muresan said...

I crave quiet times, but thy don't crave me.
I have taken to praying in the noise, writing n the noise, even sleeping in the noise. I give up on quiet times.

Irritable Mother said...

Angie - And the weird thing is, when there's that much noise around, you almost don't even recognize the quiet.
Here's hoping you'll find a piece of quiet now and then, amidst all the noise.