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Devotionals Are for the Brave
by Tom Goodman
August 22, 2012

If we're not faithful in daily prayer and meditation, maybe it's not so much a lack of time as it is a lack of courage.

Courage?  Does it really take bravery to spend some time in quiet reflection?

I think The Onion was on to something back in March of this year with their newspaper headline, "Sweating, Shaking Man Never Going to Spend A Little Time With His Thoughts Again."

Of course, if you know The Onion, you know it's a satirical publication.  But there's often a kernel of truth to the silliness.  There was certainly a core of brutal honesty to their fictional report of "badly shaken 39-year-old senior account manager Daniel Tillison" who had made the mistake of taking a moment alone for quiet reflection.

"The worst part is, I actually did this to myself," Tillison admitted.  "I actually said, 'I think I'd like a little time alone to think about some things.'  Then, for a few brief, horrible moments, I looked deep within myself and saw who I really was.  It was honestly the scariest, most nauseating experience of my life."

Would he ever do it again?  The Onion reported, "Tillison said that if he ever again found himself alone and without the distractions of music, the Internet, television, or video games, he would repeatedly hit himself in the head with the handiest large blunt object to prevent any sort of return to his own innermost thoughts."

I suppose it can be dangerous to get so quiet that we start questioning the worth of our assumptions and behaviors and priorities.

And maybe that's why even those of us who are Christians prefer to start our day with the distraction of our Facebook or email accounts instead of our Bible.

Don't be afraid to start your day with a little prayer and Bible study!  In my daily reading, I reflect on a text until I can answer three questions:

What do I need to praise God for?
What do I need to confess?
What do I need to ask God for?

It's a simple routine to practice, but over time the results can be profound.  Through this practice across the years I've uncovered assumptions I needed to change, or rebellions I needed to surrender, or new roads I needed to take.

Be courageous enough to start your mornings in quiet reflection!


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