Username of the writer: LiteraryGuy
We live in a society that frowns upon a prescribed way of living. People do not want to be told what to think or whether their decisions are right or wrong. Essentially, if something feels right, then it is the right thing to do. After all, adhering to a list of doing and don’t can only take away from the happiness that life can bring, thereby defeating the purpose of being placed on this earth. As a Christian, I find such a mindset appalling.
Having been raised in a Christian home, I have developed the firm belief that Christian values are principles ingrained in common sense. Therefore, instead of seeing the teachings of Jesus as a deterrent to a happy life, I selflessly live my life by appreciating the world around the people in it and me. As a result, people can achieve a sense of physical and emotional well-being by inviting our Savior into their lives daily, and there are a variety of things that I have found to give me solace in my day-to-day life.
Prayer is an essential part of my day. After waking up, I sit in silence in front of my icons of Jesus and thank the Lord for giving me another day and ask Him to be by my side as I go through my day’s activities. As I go through my day, I am consciously aware of the presence of the Holy Spirit within me. Although I am not continuing to “pray” in the traditional sense of the Word, my spirit is open to any wisdom that may come my way, whether I am enjoying a cup of Starbucks coffee or waiting in line at the checkout counter at my local Walgreens. Before going to bed, I devote thirty minutes to Jesus in my bedroom. Many people who do not put aside time to pray do not realize that there is no way to communicate with Jesus. We are so used to thinking that we have to do much of the talking, but in reality, we would benefit from becoming good listeners; for example, although I ask for advice about how to handle a difficult situation, I have also discovered that just sitting in silence offers me a sense of peace and tranquility as I wait for Jesus to speak to my heart. Some people may say that they do not feel anything when they pray, but that could be because they do all of the talking. On the other hand, when Jesus is speaking to me, I can feel a warm, tingling sensation inside myself, letting me know that He has reached me and is trying to convey a message.
To complete my time with the Lord, I devote about fifteen minutes to reading from the Word of God. I use a book that contains Bible readings presented over 365 days, and I become inspired by the actual Scriptural readings followed by commentary on the preceding passages. Having gone through the book in completion over the years, I know the content thoroughly enough to focus on applying the readings to my own life. I let the words speak to my heart, and I can hear the voice of Jesus communicating with me so clearly that I use Scripture to help me deal with any problems or concerns that I may be experiencing at the moment. With this nightly time spent contemplating what I have just read, I feel the love of Jesus and that faith that He will be with me as I prepare to close my eyes and sleep in peace.
Many people have a difficult time spending time with the Lord, and for a good reason. In a society in which we are encouraged to follow our desires without depending on anyone for approval, holding ourselves accountable for our thoughts and actions can be frightening. Allowing ourselves to be held responsible for how we live can make us feel inadequate and, as a result, see Jesus as a threat to our individuality rather than as a Comforter who loves us so much that He has only our best interest at heart. Thus, by studying his Word, we discover that Jesus is honest with us about what we need to do to attain eternal life. After all, living on this planet may give us temporary pleasure, but living for Christ provides us with eternal rewards.