The Busyness of Ministry: How to Stop and Seek God

snow in backyard
Our snowy backyard this morning. If you look closely on right, you can see our cat. Think she likes the snow!

Last night it snowed here in Georgia.  And I mean it snowed pretty good (well, for the South at least).  At our house we got about 3 1/2 inches of snow (some parts of our county got 6 inches).  Some of you who live where it snows a lot are probably laughing at this amount.  For us Southern folk, this is a lot!  We aren’t used to so much snow.

I woke up early and made my way into my “writing room”, as I like to call it. The house was quiet and I sat there just staring out the window at all the snow.  It was so peaceful.  No sounds, well except for our heat that was running (which I am grateful we still have).  There were no sounds even from outside.  No dogs barking.  No birds chirping.  No loud trucks on the roads. Complete silence.  I did my morning devotion and then just soaked in the silence.  So peaceful and I loved it.

In ministry, we sometimes get caught up in all the activities, to-do lists, planning, and stress that we forget to be silent.  We forget to stop and listen for God’s voice.  You might think that because we are doing ministry then we are doing God’s will.  That’s not always the case.  Sometimes we do what we think is best and not what God wants us to do.

So how do we stop all the busyness of ministry and focus on the will of God and his voice?

writing room
My writing room

1.  Find your quiet place   What is the place you love to go and just sit and be still before God?  For me I have a couple of places.  One place is my writing room in my house.  It has big windows in it and I love to look out over my backyard and spend time with God.

Another place is the Sanctuary of our church.  I like to go in there first thing in the mornings (not every day but some days).  The lights are off, the sun is beaming through the stained glass windows, and there is pure silence.  I read the Bible and my devotions.  Then I put in my ear buds and sing (if you walk by and hear a loud sound, that’s me).  It’s so peaceful and easy for me to listen to God’s voice.  I love the silence of the Sanctuary.

Find your quiet place.  Make that your place with God.

sanctuary
Our peaceful Sanctuary in the early morning

 

2.  Spend time in His Word     You want to know what God’s will is?  Then you have to open up the Bible and read.  This is the Word of God.  He speaks so much throughout every book.  And yes, it still applies to us today.  Carve out a time each day to spend with him.  Keep that time sacred.  It’s like an appointment with God.  Don’t cancel on him.  He wants to see you and hear from you.  Having a set time each day helps you to make it a part of your day.

3.  Seek Him    God seeks after us every day, hoping that we will hear him speaking to us.  But, often times we don’t hear him because we are not seeking after him as well.  Jeremiah 29:13 says:

“You will seek me and find me when you search for me with all your heart.”

Are you truly seeking the Lord?  Scripture clearly tells us that we need to seek God with all our hearts.  Are you spending time with him daily?  Are you thanking him?  Are you praising him?  Do you sing to him?  Do you pray?  Are you serving others?  Are you serving Him?  Do all you can to seek Him and I know you will find him.

4.  Let Things Go    When we are in ministry we feel like we have to do more and more and more to have a great ministry.  In reality, the less we do the better.  Let go of some things in your busy schedule.  Maybe this means delegating some responsibilities or maybe it means totally cutting something out.  Before you let go, seek God and listen to know what his will for you is.  Don’t just let something go because you want to.  Listen and do the will of God for your ministry (and for yourself).

Being silent is hard, but it’s so important for us in our daily walk with the Lord.  Elijah didn’t hear God in the wind, earthquake, or fire.  He heard God in the silence (1 Kings 19:11-12).  God speaks to us every day.  Are you listening for God’s still small voice?

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