Today I want to talk about one of my favorite parts of Rock-N-Water: The Quiet Time! If you have ever been to Rock-N-Water, then you are probably familiar with what we call a “quiet time.” Maybe you’ve thought that this time is simply a way for us guides to have a break from all of our duties. (And I won’t lie–we sure do appreciate the time to rest our tired bodies for a short moment!) But there’s so much more to this simple act than just calming ourselves down and being quiet.
What is a Quiet Time?
At our camp, a quiet time is a chunk of time set aside to simply be quiet and be still. ( In fact, you may have heard people refer to a quiet time by different names, like “devotions,” meditations, reflective time,” etc…) During this time, a guide will often share a short devotion or a Bible verse, and then encourage everyone in the group to find a quiet place to be alone with God and their own thoughts for a bit. The amount of time can be anywhere from 10-20 minutes; however long the guide decides to make it.
I personally believe that this commitment to allowing time for guests to pause and reflect is what makes Rock-N-Water stand out from other camps. I am amazed at how this short devotion time is included along with the many other fun and high-energy activities at camp. It is an interesting contrast, yet it blends so well with all that we do here at camp and brings the focus back to God.
I was first introduced to the idea of having a quiet time with God the first year I came to Rock-N-Water. My younger self understood the importance of being in God’s word, but the term “quiet time” was very new to me. My personality is such that I like to always stay busy and get things done (I am the kind of person who likes to make multiple lists each day and manage my time down to the minute–no lie). It seemed silly to busy-planner-mindset me to spend time just “doing nothing.”
But as I began to incorporate quiet time into my day and my adventures, I began to notice a change. Having times throughout my day to be quiet helped me to refocus more on God and become more aware of God’s presence in my life. My mindset was slowly changing after having these quiet times each day, and I could see God in areas of my life where I didn’t see Him before.
If you’ve been to Rock-N-Water before, maybe you’ve had multiple quiet times with us as a camper and have seen some benefits in your life as well. But these times for reflection are not just for camp! I want to encourage you to take these quiet times a step further by making them a daily part of your life at home, too.
What should a Quiet Time Look Like?
“Be still and know that I am God” ~ Psalm 46:10
When doing a quiet time at home, there really isn’t a set of rules to follow. The time should be used as a time to unwind and take a break from all the worries of the world and to re-focus on God. Usually, you don’t “do” anything during this time, but depending on how you want your quiet time to look like, there are a few quiet things you can do. When I have my quiet times, I enjoy spending time in prayer or reading the Bible. I will typically keep my Bible or a journal with me so I can read some truths from the Word or journal about what God has been teaching me.
Preferably, you want your quiet time to take place somewhere where there are very few distractions. It should be a place where you can relax and feel comfortable. If you’re outside, look for a place that allows you to view God’s beautiful creation: A beautiful mountaintop view, a calm spot by a river, or under the huge forest trees. It can be done inside, too (just try to find a place that is secluded and not full of distractions).
Another thing to note is that this devotion time does not have to be as long as we make them at camp. It can be as long as you want it or need it to be. Maybe you only have time for a few minutes of quiet before your busy day starts. That’s okay. Or maybe you’ve just gone through a hard trial and you need an extra-long extended time in solitude. That’s okay, too. The point is that having a quiet time each day is meant to help us refocus our day on God.
Why is Having a Quiet Time Regularly So Important?
“But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law, he meditates day and night.” ~ Psalm 1:2
I truly believe that we won’t see the benefits of a quiet time unless we do it regularly. Countless times in the book of Psalms, the psalmist shares how he meditates on God every day and all through the night. Seeing the psalmist’s commitment to meditating on God makes me feel ashamed for how little of time I set aside for God. When we get busy, it seems that the last thing we want to do is be still and think about God. But what if we were to be consistent in taking a break from our busy schedules every day to be still and focus on God? What if we took the example of the psalmist to heart and applied the same devotion the psalmist had to God into our lives? How would that change our lives?
Having some time set aside each day to meditate on God is so important, simply because it keeps our eyes looking upward to God. It is a reminder that God is still the one in control of our lives. If we don’t spend time with God regularly it will become harder for us to connect God to our lives.
God is Waiting for You to Have a Quiet Time!
When I was little, my parents would encourage me to spend time with God each day, and my mom often used the idea of God waiting to meet with me each morning. She would tell me that from the moment I wake up, God is waiting to meet with me. And it didn’t matter when I would meet with him, or how long I would spend with him, God was always going to be there waiting for me to meet with him.
God is always waiting for us to meet with him! He meets us where we are, in whatever situation we find ourselves in. He’s all we need! We will never be able to know what blessings He has in store for us until we slow down and meet with Him.
Maybe you’re thinking that these quiet times sound great, but you just don’t know where to start. Or maybe you’ve decided that they are only for camp. Normal life is quite different than the fun times we have at camp. But we need to have these quiet times with God more than ever when life gets busy, or when life is mundane. When we are fighting all the battles of life, God is the best resource we have!
Starting today, set aside some time to be still and focus on God. And don’t be surprised when you begin to see a renewed sense of strength and growth in your spiritual life simply by having these quiet times with God.