Dig deeper. When you find yourself in the desert, God wants you to dig deeper for water. Get into the Word more. There are so many promises to God’s people that we don’t know about because we’re not filled up with the Word.
Find the thing that moves you. We live in a log cabin in the middle of the forest, so that lends itself to great devotion time. There’s a trail behind our cabin. What I’ve been doing lately is I pick up a rock at the bottom of the trail, and I hold that rock in my hand the whole way up the mountain. I pray and I make that rock my prayer. I say the same prayer over and over again, and when I get to this really pretty creek that has a waterfall, I have a little place where I put my rock, and it’s my little pile of prayers. It’s a beautiful thing, because the pile of prayers is growing! I’m like, ‘Wow, I do pray!’ You just have to creatively find what connects you. When I was in high school I used to close my door, light a candle, and put on Christian music.
Learn as much as you can from your devotions. They’re designed to be a guide to help you through life. You’ll begin to see God's Word take on a life of its own.
The Student Bible has a lot of writings through it that bring little bits of the Word to life. In the last year I’ve probably gone through dozens of books like that, and I haven’t watched much television. I think television can dry us out pretty quickly. Search the Scriptures instead.
MILLARD (Mercy Me):
The main thing is to be creative in what you do. If you don’t make it enjoyable, it could become a chore. God doesn’t want us to kind of ho-hum through this. God is bringing us joy and wants us to enjoy every part of our time in Him. You’ve gotta be creative and find joy in spending time with Christ.
Every time I eat my breakfast I pull out my Bible. I’m not going to stop eating! This really helps me stay disciplined in reading my Bible.
One morning you might connect with God in a deeply emotional and almost tangible way - the next day you might feel stale and dry as a bone. Some days you set aside time for prayer, Bible study, or worship and you feel as though the Lord is speaking to you and revealing Himself to you - the next day you feel absolutely nothing. Whether we feel Him or not, God is constant and unchanging. He is working in our lives to bring about holiness. And when I can’t seem to find Him at all, the Psalm rings all the more true - My soul yearns for Thee, and my flesh longs for Thee in a dry and weary land where there is no water.
God may not be visible, but He's as real as the air we breathe. During my devotions I'm not just talking to dead air, I'm having real conversations with a Friend. He is with me more than any earthly dad could ever be. It’s the time where we humans sit at the feet of the God of this universe to read of Him, listen to Him, and talk with Him. Its humanity reconnecting with divinity. When I read about Him in the Bible the stories come to life, because I know that the God in those stories is the same One Who's with me now. If you feel like your devotional time is dull my challenge to you is this: make Him a reality in your life, and He will make your time with Him real!
KATINA (The Katinas):
Find some devotional materials that pertain to your lifestyle and culture as a teen. It's also a good idea to talk often with the people you admire and look up to spiritually. They can help you gain insight and wisdom for your own spiritual walk. When we come to the place where we really experience and know God, I believe that helps us keep our hunger alive to pursue Him everyday.
Jump Start Your Devotions in 2009!
21 Popular Artists Share Tips on How to Keep Your Devotions From Being Dryby Tracy Darlington
When you read your Bible, is it so dry the pages creak? Do your prayers seem to bounce right off the ceiling? Or maybe you’ve given up spending time with God altogether. If your devotional life has hit rock bottom, you’re not alone. Many of your favorite Christian artists have been there too. Here’s some of their great advice to help you recharge!
Mix up the time of day when you have your devotions. Do something different. Rather than in the morning, try doing it in the evening. I usually have my Bible study in the morning, but changing the time can make it feel new and different.
THIESSEN (Relient K):
Sometimes I’ll be reading or praying and falling asleep, and I wonder "Why am I even doing this?" Find a good author, somebody who’s writing books that accompany your Bible reading. I’m reading Wild at Heart by John Eldridge, and its been helping me a lot.
Commitment is the biggest thing. The dry times can actually be good times, because I’ve learned a lot in the times when I haven’t felt God. Loving Him and just knowing that He is there. I’m coming out of a period where I was like, ‘God, how come I don’t feel you? What am I doing wrong? What’s going on here?’ But I kept committed to every day seeking Him and praying. Now I’m at a place where I feel like I’m constantly walking hand-in-hand with the Holy Spirit, and it’s really amazing to see how I’ve learned from those times.
STUART (Audio Adrenaline):
What keeps your faith fresh is doing stuff that pushes the envelope a little bit or makes you step out, like a short term missions trip. If you’re having trouble with your relationship with God, or it becomes stagnant, that’s one really cool way to raise the bar. It awakens you spiritually and emotionally to how the rest of the world really lives. I think that’s an incredible way to give your spiritual life a jump-start.
Find someone to disciple you. If you get dry in your reading time, or if you’re like "Here’s a prayer -- I’m done." Talking to somebody helps you stay fresh. They’re not in the same place you are; they’re outside of it! They can encourage you, and they can give you fresh new insights.
For me, the first thing to go is usually my quiet time. And yet I want to put Him first and give Him the respect He deserves. When you’re reading the same devotional for a whole year, you start to want something different. There are 30-day devotionals where you get to change more often. Also maybe once a week, get together with a friend or a group and talk about what you’ve learned or what you’re reading. It kind of makes everything seem a little more real, and you get to hear how somebody else is taking something.
God speaks in many ways to different people. You'll find Him in the strangest places. Just try taking a walk and saying "OK God, I'm going to look for signs of You." Try it! You will be amazed at how much He is trying to get your attention when you open yourself up to the possibilities.
KOREY COOPER (Skillet):
It’s kinda like exercising. It’s discipline. And even if it is dry it’s okay, because the Word of God is getting in your heart. And you know, like exercise, sometimes it feels good and sometimes it doesn’t, but there’s always a good result!
NICOLE C. MULLEN:
Listening to worship music can get you in the right mindset. And a lot of times it helps to do devotions with friends. I also like to read commentaries on the Bible to get a new perspective on different passages of Scripture.
I wouldn’t give my wife the same flower each day, every birthday give her the same gift, or tell her the same things every night. It’s the same way with expressing our love to God. Obviously, your quiet time is going to have similarities from day to day, but stepping outside of those boundaries will keep things interesting.
It can be tough sometimes to keep devotions alive. Current books about the Christian life can help. I sometimes change my location, like spending time with the Lord outside on a nice day. I always pray fervently to God for an intense desire to want Him more.
Every Christian I know struggles with keeping their devotions from becoming a lifeless experience, and that includes me. I think understanding that God is not bound to a program or a system is very important. God wants us to fellowship with Him through an intimate love-relationship. One of the biggest misconceptions about our quiet time is that we have to do the same thing everyday. When I work out in the gym I do different exercises for each part of my body. Every month I switch my routine to different exercises so my body doesn't get used to the same old thing. Our times with Christ are the same way. One day we may take a prayer walk; another day we might read through an entire book of the Bible, or meditate on one meaningful verse. Try different forms of worship, and be creative in your relationship with God. The key to experiencing the power of God in our lives is consistently spending time WITH Him, not just doing things FOR Him or just reading ABOUT Him. We are privileged to be in relationship with the Creator of the Universe, who we can call our Heavenly Father!
I've struggled with keeping my devotional time fresh. Growing up, I thought a good Christian did their devos at the same time every day (usually at some ungodly hour in the morning!) and if they missed a day they had to go twice as long the next. Needless to say, my devotions got dry in a real hurry! Here are a couple of things I've done in the past to help keep my time with the Lord fresh: #1. Keep a notepad beside you and write down any thoughts, Bible verses, or prayers that come to mind. #2 Pick up a book of devotional thoughts (suggestion: A Seeking Heart by Fenelon) and read a segment, then sit back and chew on it for a while. Here's the bottom line - God is not in heaven with a checklist keeping track of whether or not you do your devotions each day. He wants to have a relationship with you, and the only way to develop a relationship with someone is to spend time together talking, reading letters from them, listening to what they have to say, etc. The more time you spend with God, the more you'll want to spend time with Him. Don't limit your time with Him to that 15 or 20 minutes you read your Bible every day! Share your thoughts, frustrations, and joys with Him as you walk through your day - He wants to be involved in every part of your life.
Tracy Darlington is a freelance writer, and her work has appeared in Brio, Breakaway, YS, CCM Magazine, Insight, Susie Magazine, and other publications. She has interviewed countless Christian musicians including Rebecca St. James, Delirious, Newsboys, Leigh Nash, Barlowgirl, Krystal Meyers, Joy Williams, Pillar, Michelle Tumes, and many others. In her spare time she can be found riding horses or listening to music and sipping a Venti 3-shot sugar-free vanilla latte. Visit her online at her blog where she talks about Music, God, dogs and coffee. You can also look her up at Twitter and Facebook.