If there’s one part of the Christian life that comes easy to me it is doing my devotions. Even as I type it out I can see the Christian-ese dripping from that phrase – doing devotions. As if highlighting Bible verses, jotting down prayer requests, and reading through the latest Christian best-seller for thirty minutes each morning could possibly summate the act of devoting yourself to anything. But you know what I mean. And whatever you call it – quiet time, spiritual contemplation, meditation – I like it. I love reading, I love sitting still, I love pretty pens and notebooks, I love Jesus. And coffee is usually involved. So far I’ve got this devotion thing down.
And then the day happens. I have to get up from my corner on the couch and I go on with my life. I close the Bible, I snap lids on the pens, I say amen and I go forward.
This is the pivotal moment. The moment that decides whether cross-references and memory verse recitation meant anything or if it was simply an excuse to sit for a while. This, and all the moments that follow, is the test of true devotion. Do I leave my commitment to Jesus there, with my ‘devotion materials’ or do I invite him to journey with me through the remainder of the day?
There’s many great things about the Evangelical Christianity of our culture today. But it has unfortunately developed a subconscious doctrine that our walk with Jesus hinges on this idea of doing devotions. Think about – what’s the first thing you’ll suggest a new believer to do as they start out their faith? Read your bible and pray. I am a staunch advocate of these spiritual disciplines, but I think we’ve limited ourselves by believing Christianity means we do devotions.