Instant Rewards

It seems like there are so many other things to do that I can hardly justify taking the time to write, but I know it is as good for my soul to write as it is good to read a book, or tidy up the house. And so I have chosen.

Today was infinitely better than yesterday partly because it was NOT Monday and mainly because I started the day with prayer. It always works that way for me. Most of us conservative evangelicals are taught or have come to believe that we shouldn’t necessarily expect quick results from our prayers or quiet times or Bible studies. That is, we do these things out of love for God and through self-discipline when we aren’t in a very loving mood. I do expect to learn something or find some point of application when I read the Bible but I have accepted the fact that generally change is slow and most of life does not include anything remotely spectacular, even life as a Christian.

But somehow God has this way of dealing with me in spite of my conservative views. It works like this: on days when I have no quiet time of prayer and Bible reading in the morning, I usually have a horrible day–I’m moody, I lose my temper easily, I’m hard on the children, and I find myself searching for some hole to escape into. On days when I do get up and take the time to commune with God and really apply myself to a study of the word and surrender myself to Him in prayer, the day always goes much better. There are people out there who won’t believe this because it seems too simple–“Oh right. So I just have a 20-minute sincere quiet time every day and my life will be grand? Ha.” Well, it’s not that my life is grand…#2 still peed in his pants and made a huge puddle on the floor in the middle of my English lesson, #1 still moaned and groaned about not getting his way, the ironing still didn’t get done…The difference was in how I handled these things, and it was no credit to me.

I don’t believe in magic and I don’t believe in a gospel that tells us that we will surely be wealthy and healthy if we have enough faith, but God has made it so plain that He wants me to spend time with him every day, how can I refuse him? He rewards me beyond what I deserve and lets me see that it really is worth it.

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