Ten Minutes with Monet
My literary agent, Robert Wolgemuth, and I were in New York City on business. When I go there, I try to take in the Monet Collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. As we left for the airport, I asked Robert if he wanted to catch the Monets.
He was game, but we only had a few extra minutes. So we briskly walked through the Monet Collection then hopped back into our waiting cab.
You can’t really “get” Monet that way. Even if you see all you want, it still isn’t enough to really appreciate the depth that’s there.
It’s the same with the Bible. You can’t really “get” the Bible by hurriedly flipping through it. Even if a ten or twenty minute “quiet time” gives you all you want, it still isn’t enough.
The concept of a quiet time is an ill-advised accommodation to men who live in an overly busy culture. It’s good to do, but not if it’s the only thing they do. It will dumb you down. Frankly, I find reading the Bible for ten minutes is like eating one potato chip.
The Bible teaches a whole different concept: constant meditation on the word of God:
Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. (Joshua 1:8).
Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers (Psalm 1:1-3).
The Bible’s formula for prosperity and success is constant meditation on the word of God. Why? Because of what it implies. To constantly think about the Bible leads to a biblical mind and a Christian worldview. And that leads to a powerful, transformed life in the Spirit, fully surrendered to the Lordship of Jesus.
Your men may say, “But I don’t have time!” Please. That’s like saying, “I don’t have time to breathe, to eat, or to drink water.” They’re not optional.
“But I don’t have time!” Yes you do. There is no time crunch. Stop whining. You have all the time God wants you to have to do all the things God wants you to do.
As Paul might say, “Stop being a baby about it and sink your teeth into some solid food!”
- Download a Bible on your mobile device and read it in waiting rooms.
- When you read a verse that makes your heart burn, memorize it. Practice it during the day. Write it on a card if you need to. Set a goal to memorize your favorite ten verses, or one verse from each of the Bible’s 66 books.
- Always ask yourself in every situation, “What does the Bible say about this?” If you don’t know, make a note and look it up when you get home.
- Take your Bible to church and look up the verses.
- Study the Bible with some men in a weekly Bible study.
- And, yes, set aside ten or twenty minutes (or an hour or two) most days for a quiet time.
Yours for changed lives,
Patrick Morley, Ph.D.