Can you imagine ignoring your most important responsibility?
Think about a mom that just forgets to feed her new-born baby on a regular basis.
Or a fireman who forgets to turn on his radio.
Or a surgeon that forgets to wash his hands and put gloves on.
It’s hard to imagine the havoc that would ensue in these and other domains, but what about the Christian life?
Christians often neglect one of the most important responsibility in our lives, namely, daily devotion to God (scripture reading, prayer, bible study, etc).
The reason I say this is one of the most important responsibilities of Christians is because it affects every other activity we do. Without this time, our sanctification (or the process of becoming spiritually mature) will be stunted. And I want to argue from Scripture and personal experience that it should be, ideally, daily. Here are some reasons I jotted down in my journal awhile back for why I, personally, need this:
1.) I know myself enough to know how much damage I will do to myself, my wife, my church, my friends, and my witness without daily submission to the Bible and the Holy Spirit.
2.) The overwhelming New Testament commands to kill the flesh and to make war against sin; I need all the help I can possibly get to do that. Also, sanctification–unlike justification (the definitive act of salvation by God)– is an active process, working out our salvation as God works in us (Rom. 6:12-14, Rom. 8:12-14, 1 Cor. 9:24-27, Phil. 3:12-14, Eph. 6, Psalm 1).
3.) Without being refreshed by the Holy Spirit, my thinking will be skewed and not as effective (Romans 12:1-2). Intellectual virtue demands moral virtue which comes from the heart. Sin causes us to think thoughts that justify our sin and ignore truth instead of embracing the truth and repenting.
4.) My level of joy in God is directly connected to my level of discipline (Psalm 1).
Psalm 1:1-2: “Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked
or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night.“
I encourage you to pick up a copy of Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life by Donald Whitney. Beginning some new disciplines lately that I haven’t practiced regularly before (such as fasting) has dramatically helped my devotional life. I pray the same will happen for you.