MAKING TIME FOR GOD

SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS WITH GOD
Making time for God on a daily basis will do much for your wellbeing. Begin by first directing your thoughts to him. We are constantly thinking beings. Why not “think your thoughts to God?” He is really the only one who can be there always for us whenever we need him. So share your thoughts with him, your wonderings, and worries. Share your joys and triumphs; your questions and fears. You can share with him constantly throughout the day, and he will never be too busy to be with you. In truth, he can become a true friend, and loving Father in Heaven.

PRAYING TO GOD
In reality, if you are directing your thoughts to God (see above) you are already beginning to learn the basics of true prayer. It is not about using fancy words, but sharing your true heart. You can pray silently. You can pray out loud. You can pray with others as a group. The basic steps of prayer as quite simple...

STEPS TO PRAYER
First Start out by CALLING
HIM BY NAME (Heavenly Father, Father in Heaven, Kind Father, Our Father who art in Heaven.)
Then THANK HIM for what you are thankful for in that very moment. Maybe you are healthy and not sick. That’s something to be grateful for. Thank him for the beauty that surrounds you, the sunshine, and the rain that waters the plants. Thank Him for your family and friends, and for the blessing that they are in your life.
Then ASK HIM for what you are in need of in that very moment. Ask Him to help you to get to work safely, to be patient and kind. Ask him to help you see a way to overcome what you struggle with. And most importantly, ask him to help you to follow His will. After all, he is the Master builder and planner, and overseer of all creation. If there is anyone who can offer you sound advice on how to direct your life, it is your Father in Heaven. Unlike earthly parents who are imperfect, and busy, He always has time for us, loves us unconditionally (meaning that he loves us despite our flaws). ...Now that is not to say that he condones our sins just because he understands why we do the things we do. But if we turn to him, he can help us to repent of our sins and to feel the joy and peace of his everlasting love.

Then FINISH YOUR PRAYER simply by saying IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST, AMEN.

When you pray in a group, one person should say the prayer, and when they are done, everyone should say AMEN, meaning that they agree with the prayer that was said.

PRAY TOGETHER
Give thanks before you eat, pray with your kids before they go to bed, pray with your Sweetheart, and you will feel closer as you hear them offer up their hearts to God. It is said a family that prays together, stays together. Remember this is not talking about repeating a set prayer over and over. It’s about sharing your heart with a loving God, and hearing your loved ones learn to do the same.

HOW GOD SPEAKS TO US
Up until this point, we have learned the ways of communicating to God through our thoughts and prayers. But true communication means that we must give him an opportunity to speak directly to us.
One of the ways is through
SCRIPTURE READING
After all, the scriptures contain God’s word as recorded by his prophets. One great way to make sure you get your “daily dose” of scripture reading is to read during one of your meals. Why? Because physically we rarely neglect our physical hunger. If only we could realize that we hunger spiritually as well to be close to God. Even in a fast paced world, a short breakfast can allow for at least a page, if not a chapter of scripture reading.
Of course if your schedule allows you to read before bed or when you wake up, those are ideal times to feast upon the scriptures. Did you notice the words “feast?” Just as you enjoy a Thanksgiving feast, you can also enjoy reading the scriptures. The more you do it, the more you will enjoy it. If you don’t like to read chapter by chapter, another great way is to just open up your scriptures and start reading. It’s a great way to start, especially if you’re not used to reading the scriptures. Some great places in the New Testament to read are The Book of Luke, Psalms, & Proverbs.

HOW TO LET GOD INTO YOUR LIFE
In the scriptures it says, “Ask and you shall receive, knock and it shall be opened.” Yes, God knows all things, but he still wants you to ask him to be a part of your life. If you have kids, you still want them to ask you (in a nice way) when they need your help. Even if we see that they need help, they need to learn to ask for help when they need it. Similarly, we too need to ask God to be with us throughout our day, and to guide us along. He has a big job ahead of him to try to get through the noise of the TV and the Computer, not to mention having to get through our own stubbornness and weakness. But if we invite him to be with us each day, and ask him to help and guide us, it will open us up to trying to hear his promptings. We might even come to realize something that could help us in our lives.

AFTER YOU PRAY BE STILL & LET GOD answer your prayers
In true communication, you need to take turns speaking and listening. Often in prayer, we forget to take time to listen. This is done by just being quiet and still for just a moment. Having a special time in the morning or before bed is a great time to kneel by your bedside to share your personal thoughts with God. Then when you are done, remain still and quiet for just a moment or two. You may not notice any big change right a way, or receive any big revelations from God, but it is a time to let him know that you are trying to be open to his message. With practice, this will be a time for you to get centered and become one with God. More often than not, you will find that you will be given peace and enlightenment towards solving your most complex situation or problem.

FINDING GOD
You can find God and evidence of his kindness and love in almost everything in your life. God created the earth that we live in. God created you, and all those around you. Often we have too many things filling up our senses, that we are not aware of God’s quiet promptings. If you think you don’t have time, try having a day without the computer or TV, and you’ll see how much time you have for God and family.

COMMUNING WITH GOD
Communing with God goes beyond praying for help, or for asking for something. It is a time to be grateful for all you have, to thank him, and to worship and adore God.

HONOR HIM WITH YOUR LIFE
The best way that you can show gratitude and love to God is to honor him with your life. Live the best way that you know how. Follow the teachings of God that you have learned along the way. Such things as BE HONEST, BE KIND, BE RESPECTFUL, BE HELPFUL, BE LOVING, BE FORGIVING. Magnify the Talents that he has given you. Seek to develop new talents. Share your talents with others. By doing so, you will honor God, and live a life which draws others to Him and his divine light.

ONLY WORSHIP GOD
Don’t worship the dollar by spending far too much time at work. You can worship God by praying to him, sharing your thoughts with him, and by living the best life that you can. Remember that he is the one who is all-powerful. There is no actual power within the cross necklace that you used to wear.

HOW TO WORSHIP GOD

To truly worship God, is to worship him in TRUTH & RIGHTEOUSNESS. This means that you are SINCERE in your desire to LOVE HIM, and that you try your best to live as he has taught us, to be HONEST, KIND, AND RESPECTFUL of others. To be righteous, is to live a live with NO HYPOCRACY.

MAKE SUNDAYS SPECIAL DAYS TO BE WITH GOD
Don’t make Sundays like all your other days, busy with a list of things that need to get done. Don’t make it your day to buy groceries, or your day to wash the car, or to deep clean your bathroom.
Instead, make it a time to worship and learn God’s word at church. Make time to talk to him, to share your heart with him, to be still to listen, and to read some scriptures.

LIVE THE BEST YOU KNOW
Even if you never go to church, you have learned things along the way that you believe to be good and true. And hopefully as we mature, we learn how to become more responsible. Try to learn how to better your relationship with your parents, with your spouse, with your kids, with your friends, and with your co-workers. If you know that something is wrong, don’t do it. This is how you can honor your spirit. On the opposite side, if you always ignore those feeling inside that tell you not to go hang out with those friends, or not to go into that bar, then it will get harder and harder for you to “hear” or feel those promptings to do what is right.

ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS, or in other words, WALK YOUR TALK
It doesn’t do you any good to have the best advice in the world, if you don’t do it yourself. You can’t tell your kids, “Don’t ever start smoking, like I did, or you’ll smoke like me.” More likely than not, if you smoke, so will your kids. If you swear, so will your kids. If you drink, so will your kids. If you take drugs, so will your kids. But thankfully it works the other way too. If you don’t swear, most likely your kids won’t either. If you try to be honest in all your dealings, your kids will try to be honest as well. If you pray, so will your kids. If you read scriptures, your kids will see that it is important, and can be encouraged to read as well. So be true to all the wisdom that you know, and live it. Someone you love may be watching.

BREAKING THROUGH THE SAME OLD PROBLEMS
As you get older, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you will be wiser. Sadly, it may mean that you are doing the same mistakes over and over again. Did you ever wonder why you always attract the same kinds of guys? Or have the same problems at work? If you have a recurring problem that happens in your life, this means that you fail to recognize that you have been causing this to happen over and over. Sometimes it’s hard to accept that we are causing these things to happen in our lives, but can you at least come to realize that you may be “contributing” to the problem? So how do you break out of this recurring nightmare? Consider it an opportunity for you to grow. Stop and think, "What am I doing to contribute to this problem?" Own up to it. It’s your problem. If you keep saying it’s someone else’s problem, it will never go away. Try to think of ways that you could respond differently the next time you are faced with a similar situation. Come up with a plan. Think it through in your mind; practice it, if you will. Pray about it. Ask God to soften your heart, to help you to see things more clearly. Ask him to help you do better the next time. Then the next time, you still may not go through it with flying colors, but you’ll do better than usual. In time, this weakness may become one of your strengths.

TRUE MATURITY
Some people only think of themselves, and what they want for Christmas, rather than what they could give to others. Some people grow up and shirk their responsibilities. They still live at home, and pay very little, if anything at all to help with the rent. Some people avoid commitment because they value their own freedom, and fear that marriage would take away that freedom. True maturity means to stop focusing on yourself as number one. This doesn’t mean you don’t take time out for yourself, but it does mean that you will need to put the needs of others before your own, from time to time. Maybe your child is sick. Maybe they just want you to read them a bedtime story. They need your time. When you are out on the job, do your best. If you still live at home with your parents, do your own laundry, pay half the rent, pay half the electric bill, half the phone bill, half of the water, half the cable, and half the internet. As they say, money doesn’t grow on trees. Pretending that it does will only keep you from enjoying true independence.

HELPING YOUR KIDS BECOME RESPONCIBLE
While your kids are young, they should be washing their own dishes, helping with the laundry, helping to clean up the house, and have regular chores, like vacuuming, or cleaning the mirrors, or taking out the trash. As they do these things, pay them an allowance for helping around the house. Let them use the money to buy their own clothes, books and toys. Let them start to understand how they could either go to McDonalds several times, or they could use the same money to buy something that they have wanted to buy for a very long time. And most of all, when they make mistakes, let them take the consequences. If they forget their backpack for school, don’t go get it for them. If they stay up too late, don’t let them stay home from school. Life is a learning process, with natural consequences. If you always run to their rescue, they will not have the confidence to fly on their own. Yes, they might fall and get hurt, but nows the time for them to test their wings along the way.

KIDS AND COLLEGE
Kids need to grow up and learn how to make it on their own. Going away for college is a great way for them to fly on their own. They will need to wake up on their own, and to make it to class on time. They will need to prepare well for exams, and to interact and get along with different kinds of people. They will need to wash their own clothes, and cook their own food, or at least make it to the cafeteria on time to have breakfast. Going away is the best way to help your kids to grow to become self-reliant. If they go to the local college, they’ll end up bringing their laundry home for you to do. Yes you love them, but encourage them to go away, and when they do come back home (to visit), you'll be amazed at how much they grew.