Last week, I talked about what "journey mercies" means and why my blog carries that name. As I'm slowly getting back into the habit of regular writing, I'm taking time to explore what my blog is all about. And the first priority? To pursue Jesus.
If you've read my faith story, you know that I grew up in a Christian home, going to church and memorizing Bible verses. And it was the power of the Gospel that made me continue to follow Jesus even after leaving home.
Pursuing Jesus has looked like a lot of different things throughout my life. As I became a wife and mother, my "free time" decreased dramatically, and I realized I needed to get creative with how I grew in my faith. Having a regular time of prayer and Bible study has been an on-and-off thing for me. Some months, I thrive on daily early wake-up times. And other seasons, I struggle to open my Bible at all.
Right now, pursuing Jesus means waking up at 6 a.m. Monday through Friday, before my family does. I've realized if I don't put Jesus first in my day, time with him won't happen at all. And my priorities and passions will be in all the wrong places. Morning is not my natural "happy hour", but it's the only time available for me. I've tried waking up earlier than 6 a.m. to give myself even more time, but that actually makes me even more cranky and unhappy. A 6 a.m. wake-up time seems to be the threshold of maximum productivity for me.
I wake up and wander out to my little desk in the corner of our living room. I set the kettle to boil to make a cup of tea, and I open my journal and download all the thoughts and worries that have been brewing since yesterday. It clears my head and quiets my soul, so that when I open my Bible I can hear what God is telling me.
Studying Scripture looks like a lot of different things. Sometimes I'm able to work through a passage or book on my own; other times, I need structure and guidance as to what I read every day. Last month, I spent weeks memorizing Colossians 3, sinking my mind deep into Scripture, allowing it to penetrate the hard layers of my heart. This week, I just started the Daniel study on She Reads Truth. However I approach it, I know the Bible is God's primary way of speaking to me. It shows me my sin, the motivations behind my actions, and how Jesus came to change me from the inside out.
My daily routine of Scripture and prayer fits into a lifestyle of seeking community and accountability with my faith. We are part of a church that challenges us to follow Jesus and love others well, through weekly gatherings on Sundays and small groups. Faith can't flourish in an isolated vacuum. God meant for us to be part of a larger family, so we can live out the truths we learn during our times alone with him. And in the next few weeks, I'll talk more about what that looks like for us.
This is just a small picture of what pursuing Jesus looks like for me right now. And I'd love to hear what it looks like for you in the comments below. Let's encourage each other to keep getting up early or staying up late or giving up our lunch hours to seek first his kingdom and his righteousness in our lives.