The following is an excerpt from our daily devotional Fellowship With the Father, written by IFA contributing writer Remco Brommet.
The microscopic menace labeled COVID-19, which very much resembles the types of plague frequently mentioned in Bible prophecies as one of the sudden and unexpected “shakings” God brings to get mankind’s attention, caused just about the entire world to grind to a halt. Church included. It has been widely regarded as a “Reset” a “Great Pause” or a “Forced Sabbath.” A time to reflect on our doings as the people of God.
Perhaps because the pace of our daily lives in our technology dominated, instant-everything world was spinning out of control?
Perhaps because our treasured idols of financial success, entertainment, sports and creature comforts were crowding out His daily presence in our lives?
There are no doubt a lot more reasons why God brought about this unprecedented shaking, but I mention these for a reason.
A couple of months ago my wife and I read a book by John Mark Comer, a millennial mega-church pastor from Oregon. He burned out on being a mega-church pastor, re-evaluated his life, resigned his job and wrote a book about his experiences called “The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry.”
In it he makes a couple of crucial observations that spoke deeply to us.
First: the greatest enemy in our relationship with God is not unbelief, it is hurry. Why? Because God is never in a hurry. God is love, and you can’t hurry love (does that remind you of an old Diana Ross song?). Love is based on deep connection, and deep connection takes time.
Second: Jesus modeled how we should relate to the Father, and it doesn’t look anything like what we have become used to.
Everything we have talked about so far – coming, being still, listening, delighting, Spirit-directed praying, blessing (in short, loving God, loving people) – requires generous daily helpings of our time. Have you ever noticed how God would sometimes call His prophets to a desert retreat because He wanted to speak to them, and He made them wait for 40 days? That desert place is called “eremos,”a place of desolation – free from distraction or even natural beauty that would outshine the beauty of God’s presence – so He would become their sole focus.
The principle at work there: before we can truly hear God, we must empty our minds from hurry, distraction and busy-ness. For a busy prophet or spiritual leader, that apparently took 40 days of sitting in the desert doing absolutely nothing else. Most of us don’t have a desert nearby, so what would be our eremos? What would it take for us to spend a protracted time in His Presence, free from noise and distractions?
Today’s Prayer Assignment
Take your first step in the ruthless elimination of hurry from your life. Think about what you can do today to slow down. Ask God to help you. Remind yourself that God is never in a hurry because He loves us, and you can’t hurry love.
Take some time to meditate on Psalm 123: 2: “Behold the eyes of the servants look to the hand of their master, as the eyes of the maidservant to the hands of her mistress, so our eyes look to the Lord our God, till He has mercy on us.“
And Isaiah 40:31: “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength.“
Wait, look, seek – till He speaks, directs, refreshes, strengthens, loves.
Finally, think about some practical ways to eliminate hurry from your life so you can truly put God first in the use of your time and attention. After all, that is the whole idea!
What did you think of this article? Share your thoughts and prayers below.
Author Remco Brommet is a pastor, spiritual growth teacher, and prayer leader with over 40 years’ experience in Europe, Southeast Asia, Africa, and the US. Born and raised in the Netherlands and pastoring his first church in Amsterdam, he moved to the US in 1986. He and his wife Jennifer currently live north of Atlanta, GA When not writing books, he blogs and assists his wife as content developer and prayer coordinator for True Identity Ministries. Jennifer and Remco are passionate about bringing people into a deeper relationship with Christ. Photo Credit: zbindere/Getty Images Signature.
Partner with Us
Intercessors for America is the trusted resource for millions of people across the United States committed to praying for our nation. If you have benefited from IFA's resources and community, please consider joining us as a monthly support partner. As a 501(c)3 organization, it's through your support that all this possible.