What is a“Quiet Time”?
A “Quiet Time” is a daily personal appointment with God, during which we get away from distractions and meet with God through prayer and Bible study. Through these disciplines God talks to us and we talk to God.
Why is Connecting Daily with God through a Quiet Time so Important?
It reminds us that we belong to God.
Jesus said, “I choose you!” (John 15:16)
It creates room for God in our busy lives.
“Be still and know that I the LORD, and wait patiently for him.”
It builds our relationship with God through regular communication.
“Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God
and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.” (John 17:3)
It helps give direction to our lives as followers of Jesus Christ.
“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”
(Psalm 119: 105)
It enables to live deep and fulfilling lives.
My sheep hear my voice. I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one will snatch them out of my hand. (John 10:27-28)
I came that they might have life, and have it abundantly. (John 10:10)
What are some Practical Steps to do a Quiet Time?
Set some time aside during a day, or every day. Start with about 15 minutes and you work up to 30 minutes and more for each day.
Pick a place that you want to go to be alone:
It doesn’t matter where you go (a lake, bedroom, roof, park, etc.). The important thing is that you get rid of all distractions. Get away from people, phones, the internet, computers, anything that would detour your thoughts from God.
Get your Materials Together
A notebook and pen
A songbook, favorite worship tape/CDs & player
A reading plan
Follow a Simple Plan
Relax, Be Quiet before God – ask God to settle your mind and heart and then to become present with you! It is difficult to set aside all the voices in our lives that compete for our attention. Here are some practical activities to help you.
Bring a pad of paper, and ask God to quickly bring to mind the important tasks that need to be accomplished that day. Write them down and set the pad of paper aside. This practice will allow you to release these concerns knowing that you will return to them later.
Turn your mind toward God. Think about who he is, what he has done, and your relationship with him. This intentional focusing on God begins your quiet time.
Praise – for who God is.
Thanksgiving – for what God has done.
Adoration – express to God your love for Him
Listen and/or sing a worship song or two to God.
Bible – Read a section (eg. 6-12 verses), asking God to speak to you through the Word.
Read slowly, repeatedly, aloud, asking yourself the following questions:
For what specifically can I offer praise to God (Father/Jesus/the Holy Spirit)?
What do I see about what God has done for which I can thank Him?
Is there any example for me to follow?
Is there any command for me to obey?
Is there any sin or error for me to forsake?
Is there any promise for me to claim?
Write down in your notebook anything you observe and learn from God in the passage.
Pray – Talk to God
About anything you’ve just read in the Bible.
About your requests for others (family, loved ones, Christian friends, non-Christian friends, family and colleagues, our church, government, missions).
About what you need (confession and forgiveness of sin, Christlikeness, daily filling of His Holy Spirit, work, finances, family, relationships, witness).
These are just some guidelines, and not a strict formula you have to follow to get something out of your quiet times. You can start with this model and move on to tweak it to mold into a model that is the most beneficial for you.
What is PMGF?
What is GGTP?
What’s coming up for this Sunday?
Two weeks ago, we began a new sermon series at Immanuel Baptist Church, “PMGF”.
“PMGF” is a title for a sermon, as well as for this sermon series.
Our church family had some fun trying to figure out what the letters stood for and some of their guesses were read in the service. “PMGF” means, “Putting My God First.”
This has to do with a person’s personal choice to make God first in their life. Our text was taken from Proverbs 3: 5-6
This past Sunday, we learned how important it was to GGTP.
Once again, we had some clever guesses. What does it mean?
“GGTP” means, “Giving God the Preeminence.” Our text was taken from Colossians 1:12-18
Keep in mind, there will be a total of ten sermons, (nine more to go), each sermon has a title made of letters.
When we finish the sermon series, the first letter of each sermon title will also spell out an acrostic. The acrostic is also very important and will tie in with the overall theme.
This can be fun, educational and a nice project for the entire family. Get on board!
LLTL is this weeks sermon title. Can you guess what that means? Let us know your guesses!
Plan on being with us, this Sunday at 10:30 AM to hear the sermon first hand!
This past Sunday, January 14, we learned all about PMGF.
We had several people that tried to guess what the letters stood for, here are a few examples:
Pass Me Good Food
People Make Good Friends
Pain Meds Gaining Favor
Primary Members Giving Faithfully
PMGF stands for Putting My God First.
This mean that I personally must always, in all situations Put My God First!
Our text was taken from Proverbs 3:5-6.
(5) Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
(6) In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
This next week, as we think about Putting My God First, we want to learn what
GGTP is all about.
Maybe you would like to meditate on these letters and see if you can figure out what they stand for. What passage of Scripture would help us to formulate these letters?
Post your guesses, or email me.
I hope to see you Sunday for our second message about PMGF.
GGTP… Hmmm… What could it mean?
This Sunday, and over the next several Sundays, Pastor L.C. Taylor will be handling the major issue of PMGF.
Down through the years this has become a major problem in the world, but sadly it is the same for so many Christians!
This Sunday, hopefully, we will bring some clarity to the PMGF topic.
Everyone needs to know about this. If this issue was dealt with, then it would solve the world’s problems. If Christians would deal with this issue, then the world would be more willing to deal with theirs.
How have you dealt with PMGF?
What am I talking about?
What is PMGF?
This Sunday, we might be the only church in the entire state of NC that deals with this. I hope not, but you never know. Anyway, you should come and make sure that you have the PMFG issue handled.
Where? Immanuel Baptist Church of Clemmons
When? January 14th at 10:30 AM
But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day. Proverbs 4:18 KJV
When we faithfully follow the Word of God, we walk in the light. The more we walk with God, the brighter our path shines and the greater our life reflects His glory and grace.
The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined. Isaiah 9:2 KJV
Jesus is the great light that has been seen by the people who walked in the dark. We were all once in the dark. When we truly SEE – and believe in – Jesus, we are supernaturally translated into the Kingdom of His light.
For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 7 Of the increase of His government and peace There will be no end, Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, To order it and establish it with judgment and justice From that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.
Isaiah 9:6-7 NKJV
The government is on Jesus’ shoulders. We are His body – the government is on OUR shoulders. In other words, Jesus is King over all the earth and His will is what will prevail. Our responsibility is to carry the leadership of our nation. We must pray; we must lead; we must set a godly example and not be afraid to speak the full counsel of God inside the church and outside the church and even to leaders, presidents and kings!
But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: 4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. 5 For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake. 6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. 7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. 2 Corinthians 4:3-7 KJV
Because men are blinded by the devil, they have not yet seen or received this glorious Gospel, but for those of us who believe, this light has shined in our hearts. In Genesis, God said, “Let there be Light” and light came forth out of the darkness without sun or moon or stars! This same great light has shined IN our hearts and this light must shine OUT of us as well – the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
We have this great treasure, of this powerful, glorious light, in earthen vessels. God doesn’t need a perfect, golden vessel to shine through – He can shine even through earthen vessels – if the earthen vessels allow the light to shine. When people see that God is doing His work even through an earthen vessel – He gets all the glory. Your earthen vessel can take no credit for what God does through you. On the other hand, don’t ever allow your earthen vessel to limit you to small thinking, believing and doing. Because HE lives in you, you have His unlimited power and ability available through you. Just let Him shine!
Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. Isaiah 60:1 KJV
YOU must rise and shine! God is waiting on YOU! The light is in you – stand up and shine!
Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. 14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. Matthew 5:13-16 KJV
You are the salt of the earth and the light of the world! There is nothing worse than salt that has lost its potency – it’s still salt, but good for nothing. Salt stings an open wound, but it is a perfect preserving agent. The world may be offended by the Gospel, but it is the salty Christians who are holding back the tide of the wicked one. Stay salty! Your good works glorify your Father in heaven!
You can’t hide a light on a hill. God has raised you up and it’s too late to hide – so stand up and shine! You can’t hide a light in the darkness. The darker the place, the brighter your light shines – even if it’s a small light – it can be seen a long way off. Don’t hide your light under a jug – let it do its job and shine brightly on whatever “candlestick” or “lampstand” that God has placed you on. Don’t be ashamed of the Gospel – this Gospel saved your life – boldly shine it to those who walk in darkness.
That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world. Philippians 2:15 KJV
Live godly, so that your light can brightly shine in the midst of this perverse generation!
And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. Revelation 21:23
Our future is a future lived in the glorious light of the Lamb of God. Because we have this great hope, we continue to allow God to use us and we work to see HIS plans and purposes fulfilled and not our own. Thank God that we walk in the light and we shine the light and His power and glory are manifested through us in order to touch and change the world!
For Christians, if God is central in the New Year’s resolution, it has a better chance for success. God gave human beings free will, and He never oversteps that freedom to make choices. God’s Word certainly has made clear which choices are better than others, but God never forces His people to comply.
Choosing to do the will of God is always a right choice and, of course, has God’s endorsement. God’s favor and blessings should be incentive enough to pursue Godly goals. God’s Word is filled with what is right and good, therefore reading and learning the Bible is a good place to start and a good place to stay.
The Christian’s first priority should be making time or more time to read and study the Word of God. This may necessitate getting up an hour earlier, or maybe less TV time. One will always make time for whatever or whoever is loved. Jesus said, “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 22:37-39)
This is a good place to start for any believer. Goals set in this light would include spending more time in personal devotion to God, Bible reading and time in prayer. This time is usually best first thing in the day, before all the demands and activities of daily life make quiet time with God impossible.
Other resolutions might include memorizing verses of Scripture, perhaps one a day or one a week. Pick positive and encouraging passages, and inspirational promises of God. Prayer time should be purposeful, perhaps with a list of people or situations that need prayer. One might even have a prayer journal, jotting down how and when God answers the prayers.
Financial giving is certainly a solid Biblical principle which includes tithing and special additional offerings for different church needs or perhaps for the support of missions work. The only way to improve on the principle of tithing is to increase the proportion of the amount. It may be that in order to give more, the resolution might include spending less on sodas, or coffees or movie rentals. These kinds of resolutions are blessed decisions. If one has more time than money to offer, perhaps volunteer in the children’s department at church, or make a plan to visit the sick or elderly. Maybe it’s time to restore a damaged relationship with a family member or an old friend.
Personal resolutions might include watching less TV, spending more time with spouse or children, such as playing games or going out to sports events or picnics in the park. Resolutions might include planning dinner parties for friends and neighbors, becoming better organized at home, in the office or garage, or maybe getting additional education on a subject by taking a community college course or online class. Better financial management is an important goal, which could include renegotiating insurance policies, utility expenses, reevaluating food costs and auto usage, and perhaps making a savings plan for a family vacation.
Ecclesiastes 9:10 says, “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might,” and similarly, Colossians 3:23 and 24 state, “And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.” Loving God first with heart, soul and mind includes and can be expressed in having an enthusiasm and exuberance for many things in life. God’s desire is for His people to live life to the fullest and to flourish, having good health and prosperity, among many other blessings. Resolutions and goals selected with love for God and done thoughtfully in prayer can be life enhancing and enriching.
With so many competing time demands, why should we pause to seek the Lord in prayer? Among the many reasons, here are three essential ones to make time to pray:
Prayer Honors God
It’s said that you can tell the popularity of the church by the number who show up on Sunday morning; you can tell the popularity of the church’s pastor by the number who show up on Sunday night; and you can tell the popularity of Jesus by the number who show up to the prayer meeting.
What has happened to our churches? You call a prayer meeting today and very few people show up. I know of a church of 5,000 in Denver that called a prayer meeting and only five people came.
That’s a far cry from the day a century earlier when the entire city of Denver paused for prayer — “even at the high tide of business.” The Jan. 20, 1905, Denver Post reported: “Seldom has such a remarkable sight been witnessed — an entire great city, in the middle of a busy weekday, bowing before the throne of heaven and asking and receiving the blessing of the King of the Universe.”
Oh, that believers would honor God in prayer and seek the Lord similarly today!
Prayer Teaches Us
We may earnestly desire God’s glory. We may pour our lives into serving others for His sake. Still, we have to admit that, try as we might to avoid doing so, our own agendas taint our prayers. What can we do about these mixed motives?
Let God search you. When we pray for God to cleanse our hearts and our motives as David did in Psalm 139:23-24, it is important to yield the search-and-destroy mission to Him. He will bring wrong motives to our attention and lead us into repentance.
Confess mixed motives. Ignoring them won’t make them go away. While they may always lurk, Jesus invites us to confess them and receive forgiveness and cleansing (1 John 1:9).
Ask God to teach you. As we surrender to His refining hand, we can ask Him to redirect our hearts and and cause pure motives to rise to the surface (as the psalmist did in Psalm 119:36).
Grow in thanksgiving. When we thank Him, we’re not looking for anything from Him. We’re focusing on Him and thanking Him out of a heart that’s full from what He’s given.
Prayer Changes Things
It’s said that Habakkuk means “wrestler,” and the prophet sure did grapple with God. He saw fellow Hebrews worshiping idols and sacrificing their children to foreign gods, and he cried out for justice. But it seemed his prayers weren’t getting through.
The short book of Habakkuk records the “wrestling match,” even when the Lord did answer and it wasn’t what the prophet had prayed for. But by the third chapter, observe and be encouraged in your own prayer life by the prophet’s new view and renewed trust.
Habakkuk stopped looking around and started seeing things from God’s perspective. He resolved to live by faith in light of who God is, what He has done and is doing, and what he has promised to do — not only in the world, but also in his own life.
Are you grappling with God? Let Jesus’ prayer be yours: “not my will, but yours be done” (Luke 22:42). And let Him know you agree that the Father knows best.
Article by Dean Ridings
Please join us December 24th, Christmas Eve @ 6:00 PM for a concert featuring local artist Chad Muncy. During this event, Chad will sing some of the “All-time” favorite Christmas carols and hymns as well as some of the most current Christmas songs.
Christmas Musical, Wednesday evening, December 20 at 7:00 PM by Joel Everett. During this event, Joel will play through every Christmas hymn in the church hymnal as well as take requests.