Making Space for Holy Moments
“The whole town gathered at the door, and Jesus healed many who had various diseases. He also drove out many demons, but he would not let the demons speak because they knew who he was. Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.” Mark 1:33-35 NIV
What’s the first thing you do in the morning?
I’ll be honest. I wake up, roll out of bed, and I go check my phone.
I hate that I just said that, but it’s the truth. When we first got married, Jackson and I realized we spent a lot of time near each other but on our phones scrolling separately. To break that habit, we added even more technology into our lives. (The irony!)
We decided to have a “smart house” so that our phones were no longer kept on nightstands and we couldn’t use the “it’s my alarm” excuse anymore. We transitioned to relying on Google Home to be our alarm, and left our phones in the kitchen.
So at some point every night, the phones are on the charger and we don’t see them until the morning. Even so, I go straight to the kitchen, check all of my missed notifications, and immediately get overwhelmed by the day ahead first thing in the morning every day.
Being busy has become a popular and acceptable thing in our culture. “I’m so busy,” is a natural response to the question, “how are you?”
But I don’t want to miss out on holy moments because my calendar is too full.
A concept I’ve heard of in business is that you need enough margin and flexibility in your life that you’re able to say no to opportunities that don’t fit what you’re trying to build. I’m a natural “yes” person, so that’s hard for me.
I want to say, “yes” to every opportunity that comes my way, and that often results in a schedule packed with a lot of junk. The magic actually comes in saying “no” to lots of things, so that you have the space to say, “yes” when it really matters.
When I wake up and check my phone right away, I’m giving my immediate attention to whatever text message I missed last. I’m giving thought and energy to something that honestly might not deserve it in that moment. I’m giving away the space I have during that time to whatever or whoever demands something of me.
I want to make space for holy moments. That means ridding my life of distractions, breaking some of those habits (sorry iPhone) and making myself available to God.
I want to create space in my life for the divine interruptions; to be available to answer the random phone call from a friend needing advice, to be able to talk to the neighbor who is lonely, to be home when someone knocks on the door.
Jesus had a limited amount of time during His ministry when He walked the earth. He used it wisely. It’s safe to say He was really busy, the whole town gathered at the door to see Him and He had kingdom work to do when people needed to be healed.
In that moment, it doesn’t seem like He has a lot of room in His schedule. But He makes a choice the next day to go and make it. He makes space for His holy moment, alone with the Father when He leaves so early in the morning that it’s still dark out to go pray.
I’ll be honest, some days it feels like my schedule is in charge and my iPhone is the thing that demands the most attention so it gets it. I’m working on it, I want to make more space for the holy moments.
Because without them, we become tired, burnt out, and weary. Without them, we start to forget who God is and we miss out on communing with Him.
When you look at your life, do you have space for holy moments?
-Evaluate your current daily rhythms. Do you have space for God to speak and move in your daily life?
-If not, how can you create more space? What habit or rhythms could be changed?
-What demands or distracts you from being still in the presence of God?
After evaluating your daily habits, pick one that could change and be reshaped to invite God into having more space in your life. Bonus points for reaching out to a friend or family member and asking them to check in and see if you’re sticking to it!
Hey God, Help us to fill up our schedules with more of you and less of the junk that grabs for our attention. Even though some of the things we want to give our attention and time to are good, help us to discern how to spend our time more wisely and to focus our attention on you. Prepare us to make space to encounter you this week. Amen.
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