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Monday, April 03, 2006

Appointment with God


Wow!

Twenty-two of us met for three days of glorious retreat time at Wilderness Trails Camp this weekend.

We made three appointments with God. The first was an hour and a half long and the other two were one-hour each. We set a time, a place, a passage of scripture, and talked to no one except God.

When I first set down with an hour and a half, I thought it was an awful long time to be still and quiet and read and pray . . . but the time flew. When it was time to stop, I wanted to go on. And so did everyone else!

By the end of the third hour, we had all felt very much in touch with our Creator.

This is something you can do on your own. Make three hour-long appointments with God in the coming week.

Schedule them.

Be prepared with a passage of scripture, a place, a hot cup of whatever, a cozy, quiet place, and dig in. One of your hours can even be on a walk through the woods, or park, or wherever.

Don’t know where to read? Try Psalms or Corinthians or John or?

Don’t know how to pray? Just talk to God. Tell Him what’s bothering you. Ask Him questions. Thank Him for the good things in your life.

Don’t know how to dig in? Simply read.

Don’t use this time for study. By that, I mean don’t tackle the Bible with several commentaries and a concordance by your side. Simply read. You can study later.

Don’t use this time for the big questions regarding others. Simply seek God for your own life and how that works into His story.

Don’t answer the phone. You can return calls at the end of the hour.

These hours can be life changing.

It was amazing at the retreat, because sometimes we were totally in the middle of talking and doing and playing, but when the time for the appointment was announced, everyone immediately dropped what they were doing and settled down. Most didn’t want to stop at the end of the hour.

On the second night of the retreat, I gave out seven questions from, The Dream Giver, by Bruce Wilkinson, and also added one of my own. They would be great for one of your hours. Take as long as you need to answer each one, and name as many things or people as you want. Here they are:

1. What have I always been good at?
2. What needs do I care about most?
3. Who do I admire most?
4. What makes me feel most fulfilled?
5. What do I love to do most?
6. What have I felt called to do?
7. If you were to die tomorrow, what would you want to be remembered for?
8. If you could do anything in the name of Christ and know you would not fail—What would you do? To say that in another way: If you could do anything in the name of Christ and know you would succeed—What would you do?

Tomorrow, we’ll talk a bit more about whether we are Christians who write or are called to write. Later in the week, we’ll tackle the above questions in more depth.

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