This year, my wife and I have been diligent to set aside time to spend in prayer and devotional together. Every Tuesday, from 12-12:30 p.m., we stop whatever we’re doing and go to God. We start off in prayer, then read a devotional and have a time of worship, where one of us will choose a hymn to sing together.
When I pray each Tuesday over our time of devotion before God, I pray for authenticity and I pray that God honors the time we’ve carved out to spend with Him. I know there is so much more we could do — so much more time we could spend in prayer and worship — but this is a start. We want to create a cadence for our family to prioritize time together with the Lord.
This time is set apart. We allow no distractions to get in the way. We turn our cell phones and television off and make sure not to schedule anything during this time.
Recently, we had a very special moment when my wife chose the hymn “He Looked Beyond My Faults,” a hymn my grandmother used to sing to me as a kid. We called up my grandmother and had her join us as we sang. This particular time of praise and worship brought it all full circle for me. Just as my grandmother poured into my life as a young child, I want to do the same for my family.
Growing up, I remember the importance my family placed on prayer. My father would come home from his job just to pray with his children before returning to work again. When my mother dropped us off at our grandparents’ house before she went to work, my grandmother and grandfather would pray with us and then anoint each of us with oil before we set off for school. They showed us the importance of putting God first in our lives and representing Him everywhere we went. This is something I want to implement in my own kids’ lives. I find great pleasure in leading my family before the Lord.
There are distractions that arise when we try to put God first. But it all comes down to the discipline of owning your time. If we start off small and own some time each week to place before God, we can grow from there.
There was a moment recently when I found myself stuck at the gym later than I planned, talking to one of the younger guys who was about to go off to OTAs. At 11:50 my wife called and asked where I was. But we were not going to let that stop us. We would find a way to come together before the Lord. So as I raced home, I started our time off in prayer over the phone.
The enemy attacks when things are going well. There’s no doubt about that. When you start to let the little things creep in and distract you from what God deems important, you will falter. In Ephesians, we are told, “Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness” (Ephesians 6:14, NASB). Sometimes when things are going well in our lives, we allow our shield of faith to falter; we don’t keep the armor as tight as we should. But if we set in place a way to come humbly before God on a regular basis, He will help us raise that shield and stand firm.
— Kelvin Beachum, New York Jets left tackle
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