In the Assemblies of God, the first week of the new year is usually set apart as a week of prayer. This is a wonderful opportunity to recommit ourselves to spending time with God on a consistent basis. Some refer to this as "personal devotions," others call it a daily "quiet time." It is simply a time to meet with God.
Over the next few weeks I'll be giving some guidelines as to how to have a fruitful quiet time. I want to start with the simple basics and will add some additional helps for your perusal along the way.
There are a number of articles on the web that can be very helpful. I'd encourage you to research the subject on your own and develop your own plan, one that works for you. There is so much information available that some are simply overwhelmed by all of the suggestions. I've attended a number of seminars on prayer and have been both helped and made to feel guilty for my lack of commitment! Let me suggest what I believe to be the bottom-line basics for a personal time with God.
Here is what you need: You, time, your Bible and God. That's it. Simply pick a time daily to meet with God, read from His Word and talk to Him. Don't start with some heroic plan of an hour a day and 15 chapters from Scripture if you aren't consistent with what you a currently doing. Pick an amount of time that you can keep and an amount of Scripture you will read. 5 minutes a day is better than 0 minutes a day!
Your quiet time could be as simple as this: Set aside 15 minutes. Read for 5, pray for 5 and listen for 5. It will help keep your day focused on spiritual priorities and enhance your spiritual development. Try it -- you might like it!
Where should you read? In 2012, we will be working through the Book of Acts on Sunday mornings. I'd like to encourage you to follow along with the Sunday sermons by reading from the focal chapter during the week. Info will be listed on the back of your connection card to help you remember. Week one will be Acts chapter one. There are 26 verses in the chapter. Following the Sunday sermon, read 4 verses a day Monday through Friday and 6 on Saturday and see what God will speak into your life!