Contemplation is essential for spiritual leaders. A Christian leader’s life must be one of loving attention to God. It is of critical importance to set apart time for prayer and stillness.
You Must Be Joking!
Depending on your stress levels or the season of life you are in, you may well be thinking, “Well, that’s great for you, if you have the time, but you have no idea of what I am going through”. If you’re a leader who feels harried, overworked and exhausted, you probably think the last thing you need to hear is another leader say slow down and spend more time with Jesus.
I get that. But I happen to believe that a life that is attentive to God is not just available to those with the luxury of having plenty of time on their hands. In fact, I’m not sure I know any active leaders like that! However demanding life might be, each one of us needs to find time on a regular basis to tune our hearts into God’s. Busy leaders need resilience; the capacity to respond to whatever life throws at us, whether that’s demanding bosses, interrupting members of the flock, emergencies, technology breakdowns, and so on. Rhythms of deep, intentional connection with God, through silence, solitude, Bible study and prayer are necessary for such resilience.
Small Tweaks to Make Time
If we’re busy, then we may need to make some simple tweaks to our daily programme, such as getting up fifteen minutes earlier (or going to bed fifteen minutes later, if you prefer), turning the TV off fifteen minutes’ earlier and taking advantage of any occasional time when you can break up your normal, busy routine with a period of contemplation.
If none of that is possible, then you can discover God in the noisiest, busiest, most stressful parts of your life. God can be revealed in your pressure-filled office, in a messy kitchen, amongst a group of noisy children (or adults!). In fact, the more time I carve out for stillness, the more capacity I have for recognising God in times of frenzied activity.
How about you? How do you carve out time to be still? Do you feel you are just too busy? Why not comment below.
Why not check out 5 Ways I Ensure I Have a Sabbath?
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