One Shot

Updated: Sep 29, 2020

I just got home from a trip to Disney World. It is my family’s third time going, so we’re starting to get to know how to maximize our Disney experience. We utilized the FastPasses, babysat the app for wait times, kept track of show times and character visit schedules, and knew exactly where all our favorite attractions were located. A Disney trip is a vacation for the memory books, but it’s one that you need a vacation from when you get home. If you go there hoping to have fun without planning ahead, you will probably ride one ride, see the end of one Castle Stage show, and miss Gaston’s quick appearances by his tavern (and by the bathrooms where he belongs after treating Belle in such a “positively primeval” way.) Anyway, any hopes of relaxing during this trip quickly left us as we got further into our week. Most free moments at the resort were spent planning the next day, packing lunches, or doing a quick load of laundry (and don’t get me wrong, we loved it.) But even with all this, we still found time to take in moments with our kids, snuggle them, and talk about their favorite parts of the day, even if it meant staying up past their bedtime.

If you’ve taken a Disney trip, you understand the chaos. But if we’re being honest, it isn’t that much different than our everyday lives. We tend to try to maximize every day, squeezing plans into places where they may not quite fit. Then we wonder why we have no time to read the Bible or talk to God. We chalk it up to busy lives and pledge to try again tomorrow. I’ve noticed that when people confess to this phenomenon in their lives they say things like, “there’s no time left after…” or “I try to read the Bible once I’m done with…” We are ever pushing time with God to the backburner, as if it’s an extra credit task rather than the first task, the only task. If you’re finding life to be too busy to “fit God in,” then you need to stop and adjust immediately. (And just so we’re clear, I’m saying this just as much to myself as I am to anyone else. I struggle here, too.) Change your thinking from “fit God in” to “fit my plans in,” that is, fitting it in after you’ve tended to your relationship with God, talking to him and reading his Word.

If you’re finding life to be too busy to “fit God in,” then you need to stop and adjust immediately. Click to Tweet

Look at how we prioritized those special little moments with our kids during our insanely busy trip. It wasn’t something I scheduled. In fact, it made me have to stay up later getting chores done. It just came natural and didn’t feel like an obligation. The relationship we have with them positions those moments as a natural priority. If we elevate our relationship with God just as we do our relationship with our kids, we’ll find the time. We’ll understand the importance and the urgency to retain the closeness and strengthen the bond with God, just as we understand it with our kids and loved ones.

I have been blessed with a neighbor who is so wise and vocal in her faith. She told me once a long time ago that she reads the Bible to her kids before they start the day because that is the only way they know what to do. At first I thought she meant that in a general, right-from-wrong type of way. But I’ve come to learn that daily study truly points you to where God is leading you at that moment, not just in the broad scheme of things. She more recently told me that it starts with one day of not reading the Bible, which turns to two, which continues into three and four until you have walked so far from God that the journey back seems impossible.

I love how the song, “I Think I’ll Read it Again” makes reading the Bible sound like such a privilege, and such an enriching time. Look at some of the lyrics:

I think I’ll read it again, I think I’ll read it again,

I think I’ll read it again, and let it bless my soul.

Sometimes I get so tangled up in those blessed pages,

How I’m gonna rest forever in the Rock of Ages.

How I’m gonna live and sing and shout a million years,

And hear Him say, “You’ve made it home,

Here’s a crown of life to call your own.”

I think I’ll read it again, and let it bless my soul.

I think I’ll read it again, and see how high I can fly.

I think I’ll read it again, and how my feet are gonna rise.

I think I’ll read it again, the mighty book of Revelation.

It’s the only one that I know for certain, only one that predicts my future.

I think I’ll read it again, and let it bless my soul.

This rendition is by one of my favorite bands, a family band called The Nelons.

(See album in ad below!)

Look at how the Bible describes the importance of God’s word:  

In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. John 1:1

All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. 2 Timothy 3:16

Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path. Psalm 119:105

But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say, ‘People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ Matthew 4:4

I have treasured Your word in my heart so that I may not sin against You. Psalm 119:11 (HCSB)

Every word of God proves true. He is a shield to all who come to him for protection. Proverbs 30:5

The grass withers and the flowers fade, but the word of our God stands forever.” Isaiah 40:8

And my favorite…

For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires. Hebrews 4:12

Whether you are on day one of no reading, day 25, day 387, or even if you read today, I would encourage you to try approaching your day-to-day planning by asking, “Will this fit in with my plans to build my relationship with God today?” If it’s too much, move it to another day. Decline the invitation. Free the space, give yourself time to really talk to God, to really dig into his word. Get creative. We find time to watch our favorite shows. (I mean, I once discovered the art of Netflix showering. Pop sockets + the shower wall = efficient bingeing?) In the times you’ve creatively fit in worldly pleasures, try swapping them with faith-building measures. Instead of Netflix bingeing, download the Streetlights app and listen to the Bible while you’re doing things around the house. Or listen to a faith-based podcast. (Paying Ridiculous Attention to Jesus is my favorite.) If it means getting up earlier, going to bed later, hiding in the bathroom for a moment (for us moms haha)... as the Avengers would say, “Whatever it takes.” This is the mission. This is the priority. It is your soul. One day we will all face God. Our eternity relies on Jesus saying to his Father, “Yes, I know her well.” Don’t let this opportunity to know Jesus pass you by. We only have one shot. Do not miss your chance to blow. This opportunity comes once in a lifetime, yo.

Yup. Went there. See you next week! Open those Bibles!!

Our eternity relies on Jesus saying to his Father, “Yes, I know her well.” Don’t let this opportunity to know Jesus pass you by. Click to Tweet

Ashlee G

Ashlee is a wife and SAHM, an eager follower of Jesus, and a chronically loud-laugher. She loves finding new ways to look at the Bible, in hopes to grow closer to Jesus and to find fresh ways to learn and teach others.

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