Luke 18:1 – Jesus told them a story showing that it was necessary for them to pray consistently and never quit. (MSG)
Psalm 119:105 – Your words are a flashlight to light the path ahead of me, and keep me from stumbling. (The Living Bible)
Now that the hours of daylight in our part of the world are increasingly shorter, my daily walking routine with the dogs is anything but routine! And if the dogs and I are to maintain our physical exercise, I must seek with all diligence to discover those "walking" moments amidst my busy schedule. Seeking, however, is only half the battle. The other half comes in disciplining myself to take and use those moments effectively, which is not always easy. Often I find that such opportunities occur when the weather is coldest, I am most tired or least in the mood, or when there are other more enticing things to occupy my interests. Experience has taught me, though, that seeking and taking such moments is always to the dogs' and my benefit.
Likewise, pursuing — seeking and taking — time for the spiritual exercise of prayer and scripture reading often requires just as much diligence. So often, I no sooner get a nice little routine going, only to have it interrupted, shortened or terminated by any number of crisis moments, business demands or the schedules of those closest to me. Such occurrences can make it easy for me to come to the conclusion that I might as well just quit even trying to seek and take time for this area of my life. Scripture and past experience have made and continue to make it clear, however, that diligence in this area is always for our benefit and the benefit of those around us. Such rewards should encourage us never to quit seeking and taking time for spiritual exercise!
Prayer: Lord God, You who lived among us through the person of Jesus know how easy it is for us to become discouraged in our pursuit of spiritual exercise. Therefore we ask that You will strengthen us with hearts that hunger and thirst for You and Your Word. Bless us with a desire to speak with You often in prayer and to build our lives upon Your Word, that our lives and those around us will glean the benefits of such diligence. We ask this all through the powerful name of Jesus. Amen.