The 3 D’s of Devotions
“May your hand be ready to help me, for I have chosen your precepts. I long for your salvation, O LORD, and your law is my delight. Let me live that I may praise you, and may your laws sustain me.”
My dad loved to engage God daily. He was a passionate man who loved to challenge people to have a daily quiet time. Even though he passed away last year after a long fight with leukemia, his passion impacted thousands. He was the kind of guy who, if he met you for the first time and had just one minute with you to communicate one thing, he would address your personal quiet time. It was a passion that overflowed from him because it was such an essential part of his life.
But it had not always been that way. Eighteen years ago he was an overcommitted businessman who would squeeze in a quick two-minute devotion in his car before he ran into his office to start the day. That all changed with a man named Brad Curl, a good friend of my dad’s. He saw that my dad, who was serving on many local ministry boards (including FCA), was skimming when it came to his devotions. Brad decided to communicate with him in a way that got his attention. Brad literally grabbed my dad by the collar and put him against the wall and said, “Ed, you need to stop playing with God. You are a Christian leader, and you need to start diving into God’s Word and getting serious! No more giving God leftovers!” As a very intense person himself, my dad responded to this style of communication. That day marked my dad. No more playing. He started digging in. No more quick, two-minute devos! My dad’s life began to transform as he began feasting daily on God’s Word first-thing every morning. And as he spent time in the Bible, the Bible got into him.
My dad always shared the 3 D’s of Devotions: Drudgery, Discipline and Delight. He would say, “You have to start today. Don’t wait until tomorrow. If you do it now, you have won! Getting up daily and doing a quiet time starts out as drudgery. You won’t like it, but you just do it. It is hard and unnatural, but you just get it done. Then, gradually it grows into a discipline. You begin to realize that it is important, and you need to do it. It becomes a part of the way you do life. Then, if you stay at it long enough, it will become a delight. You love it and desire to do it. You can’t wait to do it because you long to be with the Lord. It is an opportunity to meet the God of the Universe each day. It is a joy to be with the Savior. Why would you ever want to pass up a daily uninterrupted, intimate time with God? It goes from a “have-to” to a “need-to” to a “want-to.”
Jesus Christ is waiting today to empower you with His presence. He longs to be with you. Engage God today. It is hard but worth it. Stay with it until it becomes a delight. I get fired up knowing that no matter what “D” stage I am at, it is a delight for the Lord Jesus Christ every day when I engage Him. He longs to be with me much more than I long to be with Him. Oh, how He loves me…and you.
1. Which “D” stage best defines your current quiet time? Why?
2. What gets in the way of making daily devotions a part of your life? List out all the things that prevent you from getting into the Word. These are called blockers.
3. Accountability is key. Do you have a Brad Curl in your life who can speak truth into you?
4. How does it make you feel knowing that God delights in you every time you engage Him. It is never drudgery or discipline for Him.
5. Read Psalm 119 and circle how many times the word delight is used. Why does God use this word to describe His words?
2 Peter 1:3-11
"Jesus, I desire to be with You every day and want to be in Your presence. My soul longs and thirsts for You. Help me to carve out the time each day to hear from You. I know You delight in me when I engage You, but I want to delight in You. Transform my quiet times so that they are a pure delight. In Your name I pray. Amen."