For as long as I can remember, I knew I was supposed to read my Bible and pray every day… I’m sure you’re wondering what the title and reading my Bible has to do with each other, but just wait; you will see the connection here in a bit.
The struggle with these disciplines – reading my Bible and praying – has been going on for just as long as I have known of them. As I have grown, I have realized that reading my Bible and praying is not to be a habit but to be a part of an on-going relationship with Jesus. I love Jesus, I really do. However, a lot of the time, I love the idea of Him, more than I truly love Him. I hate admitting that, but it’s true. I want to love Him more, but my actions remind me that my heart still has a long way to go. You can see the lack of love in my heart in the mornings I push snooze instead of waking up to pray, the times I spend on Facebook when I could be reading His Word.
The last five years or so, I have tried harder than ever to build my relationship with Jesus; waking up early to give Him my mornings, praying a little extra here and there. I remember when I started really trying how I wished to live in my own house. How much easier would it be to dedicate time to Him if I could give a room over to being a personal “Me and Jesus” room? The room’s walls could be covered in prayers, and the floor with pillows, it would be without distractions, quiet and inviting. However, living on my own just hasn’t happened yet. I spent many times using this as an excuse.
“Oh I cannot focus; I’ll do better when I live on my own.”
“I cannot lay here on my bed and do devotions without falling asleep, God understands…”
And while all of this may have some legitimacy, it does not really have a weight against how Good God is and how I really need that time with Him.
When The War Room came out, that plea for a personal room for Me and Jesus really flooded my heart again. I sat on my bed, wishing for my own place so I could have a room with no distractions. Then it hit me, like a brick, the realization that I had a room with little to no distractions. I fought the idea, wrestling with how silly it seemed. I had to choose, though. Was my relationship with God worth all the silliness that others may see? (He is always worth it. ALWAYS)
I’m sure like many of my fellow adult friends still living with their parents, I love my home, it’s home. Yet, while it is the home I grew up in, it doesn’t really feel like mine. It’s my mom and dad’s house. I don’t go rearranging the furniture whenever I want, I don’t repaint a room when I decide I don’t like the color, it’s my parents’ house. I have two designated areas of the house that are mine to do with as I please, my bedroom and my bathroom. So I sat thinking about my future house and how one day I would have room that I could really focus on my devotions in. While I do not want to ever take hearing God’s voice lightly, I think that day He was the one to put an idea in my head. It was one of those moments when an idea so simple fixes an issue and you feel almost stupid for not thinking about it before.
My bathroom… How had I not given this one a thought before? My bathroom is small, doesn’t have a lot of distractions, and I could put up prayers and I could bring a pillow to sit on the floor! No, it isn’t the room I pictured in my future house, but do I really want to wait that long to spend time truly focused on God? Do I have that time to waste?
I did it. I made my bathroom into my War Room. I taped scriptures and prayers on the wall. And I bring my pillow in there when I go to pray and read the Bible.
I’m not sharing this so that you think I have finally conquered not getting up in the mornings and not spending time on Facebook instead of reading scripture. I’m sharing this because it took me forever it seemed to find a simple solution to my distraction problem. If me writing this helps you solve an issue like that or help bring you to a closer walk with Jesus, then I’ll share it. Maybe a bathroom isn’t your answer. Maybe you need a closet, or a corner in a room. Find what works for you. You don’t need to wait for a different chapter in life to be in a closer relationship with Jesus. Really, it is worth it.
I realized after a while that anyone who went to use my bathroom could see my personal prayers I had hung on the wall, but you know what? That is okay. God, many times, has called His people to a place vulnerability. Who am I to hide my needs behind a wall of confidence and “put-togetherness”? I do not know what you need to be closer to God, everyone is different. But whatever it is that you feel God nudging you to do, to give up, to rearrange, to draw closer to Him, it can only bring you more joy. I have felt God more in my small bathroom than I ever did sitting on my bed or somewhere else in the house. It helps me focus on Him. This is my journey. Now I ask that you seek and see what God has for you.