Keith and I have a date…Friday night. Since our kids have gotten older, and now stay up late, time alone is sparse to put it mildly. So, to reconnect and relax, we have purposed to make date night happen.
Being married almost 22 years, we’ve learned that making time for each other is vital to a healthy relationship. I was reminded of this when listening to a sermon by Pastor Chip Ingram. He was talking about being an authentic Christian. That by the renewing of your mind with God’s word and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, we can live authentic Christ-centered lives.
You are who you hang around with. You are what you eat. Garbage in, garbage out. Not a very hard concept, really, but the Lord wouldn’t let it go. For days, He would remind me, “Melissa, you are what you eat.”
So what does this have to do with date night with my husband? Well, this is what the Lord has shown me.
1. Life is busy. For us, right now, it is crazy busy so Keith and I have set apart time to be together, just the two of us. We value this, so we make it a priority. Just as few things would interrupt our Friday night dates, I need to make sure that I am doing the same with my time with the Lord. Do I give Him my leftovers, my two extra minutes when I am stressed or do I set apart time to be with Him and only Him?
2. All week long, Keith will say things like, “I am so excited about our date. Where do you want to go?” He will ask me, “Are you excited about Friday night?” We anticipate good things from our time together. We look forward to it. It occupies our thoughts, not just our afterthoughts. When was the last time I felt like this towards my time with Jesus? Has it been too long? “Trust in the Lord, and do good; Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness. Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:3-4
In order to dwell and feed, I must spend time with the Lord. I cannot rush through my time with Him just to check it off my list.
3. Because Keith has celiac’s disease, we are careful about where we go for dinner. Keith and I will research and ask lots of questions about the ingredients and the preparation of the food. Remember, garbage in is garbage out. And, as we are getting older and a bit rounder, we try to make healthy choices. Less processed more organic and locally sourced. I need to make sure I am not using only processed time with the Lord. I love to read and read all the time. But I cannot substitute other’s interpretations of scriptures as a substitute for reading His Word for myself. I can use others’ writing to complement my time with the Lord, but not replace my time in His Word. ” I will feed them in good pasture, and their fold shall be on the high mountains of Israel. There they shall lie down in a good fold and feed in rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. I will feed My flock, and I will make them lie down,” says the Lord God. Ezekiel 34: 14-15
The Lord desires time with each of us. Even more than we could ever imagine. You are precious and loved. Just as Keith desires time with me, the Lord desires time with you. Let’s spur each other on to make a date with the Lord. To set apart time with only Him, to listen, to engage, and learn. To taste and see that the Lord is good. Blessed is the man who trusts in Him. Psalm 34:8