Updated: Jun 6, 2020
I just bought a new coffee mug from Amazon; a navy blue, stainless steel, double wall, vacuum-insulated tumbler. I wanted something that would keep my coffee hot during cold morning quiet times and I noticed one of the reviews said, “I use this mug in my devotions.” Perfect!
I know I’m not supposed to love things, so let’s just say I really like it. With my new mug I can read my Bible, write in my journal, pray and still have hot coffee throughout. Sometimes I even put the mug and coffee paraphernalia on the kitchen counter the night before because I’m looking forward to another cozy quiet time.
But recently the thought occurred to me, “What do I really like most, meeting God in his Word or the comfort of my morning routine?” Without question it’s the former; ever since college I’ve started my day with Bible reading and prayer. And yet…I really like that new mug.
I don’t want to load you down with a lot of devotional guilt over this. So, let’s acknowledge that it’s natural and good to enjoy the particulars of any healthy habit. It’s what keeps us going in the right direction. Yet when it comes to our devotional lives, we must always remember that even the best routine is still a means, not an end. Regular Bible readers like you and me must resist the temptation to value the process more than the Person behind it.
Perhaps that’s one reason God allows changes in our lives, even frustrating or painful ones, because they push us out of our comfort zones and make us ready to listen to him. I think the same principle applies to churches and ministries too; we can fall in love with “how it’s always been” and potentially miss what God wants to do.
The truth is, both routine and change can help us experience more of God every day, so we should maintain the spiritual flexibility to embrace both in our times of Bible reading and prayer. In fact, I’m going to think about that very thing tomorrow morning as I sit in my favorite chair, reading my Bible, with my new coffee mug.