I don’t know about you, but I tend to be the kind of person that is easily sucked into the busyness of life. It’s partly because I’m a goal-oriented person and partly due to the season of life (post-grad, can I get an amen?!), but either way, it can be incredibly exhausting. Lately, it’s been weighing pretty heavily upon my chest. I find myself sort of just cruising, letting life happen to me and going through the motions. I get stuff done, sure. But it seems like all I do is get stuff done. I wake up, eat breakfast, go to my day job, and come home to work on my business. Somewhere in there, I shower (maybe) and eat the other two meals. I sometimes read a book or have time to go out with friends. Maybe I make time to create for awhile. The one thing I find myself rarely having time for? Jesus.
It’s all good intention, truly. I plan to wake up early and spend my first hour with Him before I get going. Then I get home late and push back my alarm. I have to shower because I realize that if I don’t today, I won’t have time to do so for another two days. I make a full breakfast and then get called in early. I plan to have quiet time after I get home from work, but then I get caught up in emails, conversations with clients, social media. Mainly excuses, but all circumstances that have legitimately happened to me. Sound familiar at all? Yeah. Upon observation, I believe prioritizing time with the Father is one of the most common issues Christians run into. Even worse, it’s the one thing that brings balance into our lives. The one thing that is absolutely essential to our existence. The one thing that we cannot starve ourselves of, else we become emaciated vacuums of spirits and hollow shells of bodies lacking any depth. He is our Daily Bread, the River of Life, the irresistible Spirit, and the only One we cannot afford to neglect.
I want to be careful not to emphasize the importance of making time for Jesus for purely selfish reasons. I don’t desire to fearmong and scare you into your quiet time for the fear of depleting yourself and dying spiritually. I do want to highlight the fact that He is the very reason for our existence and we cannot possibly function apart from His grace; But there is a different reason that I am writing this.
God wants to be our friend. This morning, as I approached my computer, I had a specific topic in mind to cover. I was ready. He changed my plans. I felt Him speak to me as I opened my document. He told me: “Liv, I want you to write about friendship with Me.” I responded, “But Lord, I am not qualified to write about that. I’ve barely made time to be your friend lately. It would be hypocritical and lack substance. Just rhetoric.” Then He said, “You are my daughter, therefore You are my friend. You were created for friendship and you always have the opportunity to return to it, no matter how far you think you have strayed.”
So here I am. A daughter. Drenched in the grace of a merciful and loving Savior. Forgiven of my faults by the blood of my King. Beckoned into friendship by the song of my Beloved. Here I am, a friend of God who is learning that His desire for my attention isn’t dependent on my performance. That He will always want my nearness.
I invite you to join me on this walk. To see the eyes of the Father that burn for us regardless of if we are looking. To let His heart for us motivate us to pour all of our lives into Him. To brace for failure and be ready to forgive ourselves, knowing that His arms are always wide open and ready to embrace us when we fall off the path. To give ourselves permission to return in the first place, because God isn’t holding a grudge. To let grace pour over you like a waterfall and drink of the river of life once again. His arms are open. What’s stopping you?
words by Olivia Douglas and photo by Hailey Pierce