Finding Time Alone with God

This article is courtesy of ParentLife magazine.

It was a day I will never forget. The day my then 3-year-old asked, "Mommy, why don't you need privacy?" She was referring to the words she kept hearing over and over from everyone else in the house: "Josie, we need privacy," followed by a door shutting in her innocent little face. As she heard these words once again from her big sister, she crawled into my lap and asked those precious words, "Mommy, why don't you need privacy?"

What I wanted to say to her was, "I do! I just never get it!" But instead, the words of 1 Corinthians 13:11 came to me, "When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put aside childish things."

Thanks, God, I thought. He always has a way of reminding me to put aside my selfish thoughts and handle things like a grown-up, especially when it comes to my kids. I took a moment to let out a Mommy-sized sigh before explaining to her that we all need time alone. It did not mean I do not love her, it just means we need to take a break from each other every now and then.

Whether it is in the bathroom, the bedroom, or just playing outside — sometimes I just need to be alone. She seemed content with just having my attention for a moment and said, "OK, Mommy."

Privacy, please moments

As she was crawling down from my lap, I thought about how often I need to take "privacy moments" of my own and keep myself renewed as a mom and wife. I need to allow myself to say, "Privacy, please" to my kids and husband for a few moments and crawl into God's lap for a word from Him. I need to be intentional about letting my kids see me put my relationship with the Lord first.

Get started on your own "Privacy, please" moments with these ideas.

  • Keep all of your Bible study items in one location such as a basket or bookshelf. Let your family know that when you are at that location, you are off limits. Some items I keep handy are my Bible, a notebook or journal, a pen, a highlighter, a list of prayer requests and praises to bring to the Lord, and note cards to write quick notes to those the Lord brings to mind during my quiet time.
  • Plan your time of renewal. If your children are small, this might need to be during a nap or after their bedtimes. Even 10 to 20 minutes of "Mommy" time with you and God can refresh your spirit and give you a fresh outlook on life.
  • Play a special praise and worship CD each time you have your time with the Lord. Let your family know when they hear this CD that you are unavailable. Use this CD to help your young children fall asleep, as well as prepare you for your time alone with the Lord.
  • Schedule a family "Privacy, please" moment when each person in the family finds her own quiet spot to pray and read God's Word, listen to praise and worship music, or look at a Bible story book. Then you can come back together as a family and share what you have learned.

I do not know how much Josie understood that day, but the next time we had kids in the house who were younger, she was quick to say to them, "I need privacy" as she shut the door to have a few minutes alone.

A freelance writer, speaker, and teacher, Jolene Evans enjoys finding those rare moments of privacy while sharing life with her husband and three daughters on their farm in rural Northwest Oklahoma.

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