I know lots of people who are much more disciplined than I am. Still, I do have my daily routines. I eat breakfast every day. I floss every day. I feed Ishi a carrot every day. I pick my nose every day. And, like most Christ Ones, I have a formal devotional time with God every day. For what it's worth, here's what my morning devotionals generally look like.
1) Bible reading and meditation. I do this either at home or at a coffee shop in town. This morning I got up at 5:30. I put on a pot of coffee and then began reading certain Scriptures I was drawn to. This morning, those just happened to be Proverbs chapter 1, and Luke chapter 11. I had been thinking a lot lately about wisdom and how one acquires it in life, so Proverbs seemed like a natural place to go. I went to Luke 11 because there Jesus promises to give us wisdom (actually, he promises to give us his Holy Spirit) if we simply ask him for it. I think both Scriptures are saying the same thing. We can only get wisdom from God. No one need be ashamed of such simple faith. The keenest intellects have spent lifetimes with the Bible and have confessed to barely touching the surface of its treasures. But when the simplest soul takes the Book for what it is, they begin to feed on its meat.
2) Secondly, I spent time listening to morning prayers and Scripture readings from the Book of Common Prayer, which, even though I'm not an Anglican, I love for its biblical texts and scriptural prayers.
3) Next, I spent time in praise and worship, listening to this wonderful series of hymns.
The words will be familiar to anyone who has studied Ecclesiastical Latin. The five movements are:
- Sanctus et Benedictus
- Agnus Dei
The last reads as follows:
Agnus Dei, qui tollis peccata mundi, miserere nobis.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy upon us.
This music is dedicated to the glory of God, not self. I can't help but kneel before the Lord when I listen to Palestrina's music.
4) Finally, I watched this video by Voddie Baucham on what the Bible teaches about homosexuality. It "just happened" to show up in my YouTube feed this morning. I'm glad it did.
Voddie shows us how the encroachment of our culture in this area has affected the church. Asserting that God "winks" (my word, not Voddie's) at homosexuality is the fruit of great exegetical imprecision. As Voddie points out, the Bible is unambiguous about certain things, including the sin of Sodom. It is therefore not a loving thing to coddle error simply because you say you "love" the other person. I suppose it all depends on how you define "love." Here's my favorite definition (source). Love is a commitment of the will to the true good of the other person. Where there is great love there is always accountability. Everything else hinges on this, for if we believe that every jot and tittle of the Bible is inspired by the Holy Spirit, it is not incredulity to accept Scriptural teachings for what they claim to be. Jesus even said that families will be divided because of the stand they take about him. This is a far cry from the cheap brand of Christianity so prevalent today, a variety that costs little and is worth even less.
Well, that's it -- what a typical morning looks like for me. As you can see, the Scriptures form a big part of my daily routine. The Bible is God's way of stepping out of the shadows and making himself known to us. It tells us what he's like and what he expects from us. It guides us through every difficulty.
God knows and cares about all these matters. I cannot imagine starting the day without spending time together with him.