All too often we are in a “holy” hurry in our devotional time. How much actual time do we spend in quiet devotion on a daily basis? Can it be easily measured in minutes? Can you think of even one person of great spiritual stature who did not spend much of his time in prayer? Has anyone ever exhibited much of the spirit of prayer who did not devote a great deal of time to prayer?
George Whitefield, the English preacher who was one of the leading figures in the eighteenth-century American revival known as the Great Awakening, once said, “I have spent entire days and weeks lying prostrate on the ground, engaged in silent or spoken prayer.” And the words of another person, whose life confirmed his own assertion, were these: “Fall to your knees and grow there.”
It has been said that no great work of literature or science has ever been produced by someone who did not love solitude. It is also a fundamental principle of faith that no tremendous growth in holiness has ever been achieved by anyone who has not taken the time frequently, and for long periods, to be alone with God.
[from The Still Hour]
“Come, come,” he calls you, “O soul oppressed and weary,
Come to the shadows of my desert rest;
Come walk with me far from life’s noisy discords,
And peace will breathe like music in your breast.”
God has his mountains bleak and bare,
Where he does bid us rest awhile;
Cliffs where we breathe a purer air,
Lone peaks that catch the day’s first smile.
God has his deserts broad and brown—
A solitude—a sea of sand,
Where he does let heaven’s curtain down,
Unveiled by his almighty hand.