Spring is the time for planting! Right at the start of the season, I got some new flowers to plant in our front yard. Now a few months later, I am not surprised to find the same thing happening with these plants as all the others that have come before them. You see, I can only buy plants that don’t need a lot of attention because I always forget about them. No matter how many times I tell myself at the store, “This time will be different,” it never is. After a while of forgetting to water them, I walked out to notice my new flowers wilting. In a rush to bring them back, I dumped copious amounts of water over them and hoped I wasn’t too late. The next day they were looking good as new! Unfortunately, I never learn my lesson. Just today, I walked out to find my flowers dying again after a few weeks of neglect. I dumped buckets of water on them and came back inside, knowing that tomorrow they will look much better. Hopefully…

As I sit here, I know that it would be so much better if I just watered them regularly instead of waiting until the point of death and continuing in this broken cycle until they eventually die out.

For a season, I was treating my time in scripture and prayer very similarly. I would notice things starting to feel dead and realize I hadn’t been spending any time here lately. I’d get back into a daily routine for a week or so. Then, life would get busy, I would forget, I wouldn’t make time. That is, until things started to get bad again. But, unlike with my plants, I quickly realized that showing up daily was much better than only showing up when I felt like everything in me was dying. Since then, the practice of starting each day in scripture and prayer has impacted my relationship with Jesus more than anything else.

If you’re struggling with this too, here are a couple of things that helped me in the process:

I had to switch my timing. Being someone who hates an early alarm, I used to try to end my day in scripture and prayer. This was problematic for a lot of reasons. I was usually too exhausted to be intentional and would often just fall asleep. Also, it’s much easier to make excuses or get too busy when it’s the last thing to do in the day. In starting my day here, it’s a whole lot easier to actually show up. I started just 15 minutes earlier, which was very doable even on my 5am mornings. Now, I am setting up my whole day to be one where Jesus leads from the start.

I had to let go of what this time was supposed to look like. I used to think it had to be an hour long, and I had to read at least a whole chapter of scripture, and I had to journal for an entire page after. Now, this time is sometimes an hour, sometimes more, sometimes 30 minutes. I hardly ever read a whole chapter at a time anymore. Instead, I focus on quality over quantity and give space to let what I am reading take root in my life.

In starting my day with what really matters, I no longer live in the continuous cycle of letting myself die just to try and bring myself back.

I set another alarm today so maybe I can start watering my plants too.

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