Let No One Despise Your Devotion

Let No One Despise Your Devotion

Your devotion is like your story; no one can define it better than you. It is like your shoes; no one else knows how it truly feels.

Let me tell you my funny exercise story from a few days back. 👩🏾 I have been wearing my smartwatch almost everyday since last year as my personal commitment to physical wellness. With the restrictions imposed on everyone due to the pandemic, I am happy that it can tell me how many hours I stood up or moved about, and how many calories I had expended daily. On my most active days, I am very happy to see the rings close.

Unfortunately, on this blessed day last week or so, I woke up with a sparkling 💡 idea. Why don’t I set even higher daily exercise targets?

So, I did a quick google search: How many calories should a young woman burn daily, on the average? 🤔

Now, Google was kind. 😊 One of the pages I opened asked me for clarification; “Is this woman in question an active person or more sedentary sort of?” (Folks, I work an office job. From home. Do the math.) 

Ever the optimist, I chose a new target that was greater than the amount mentioned for not-so-active ladies but less than the amount for very-active ladies. Fair, ain’t it? 🤷🏽‍♀️

Alas, it was a whooping 1500+ calories from my former daily target! 😁

That day, I stayed active! I moved forward, backward, left, right, up and down. In the evening, I hopped on a treadmill and covered more laps than I had done in weeks… After it all, I checked my rings…

Ladies and gentlemen, it was as if the red ring did not budge. The other 2 rings almost closed, but this one was very very far from closing. 🤣🤣🤣

Did I do more exercise on that day? Yes. Was the progress all that obvious from my watch? Sadly, no!

There are seasons in our lives when our progress will be evident to all. There are other seasons when it would seem as though we are in a backstage.

No matter what phase I am in, I am learning NOT to despise my efforts.

No matter what phase I am in, I am learning NOT to despise my efforts. I am also determined not to let anyone despise my efforts, at least within my hearing. They can talk all they want behind my back. But if someone says something in my presence, I immediately set the records right, lest their words somehow enter my gateway and influence the way that I perceive my journey.

Devotion is anything and everything that a person does consistently in order to cultivate and maintain a relationship with God. 

Peradventure, you are in a season when your time is so demanding; like when your daily commute to work takes so long that you get to leave the house at the crack of dawn and you have resorted to reading your Bible and praying in the bus; or you are caring for a sick relative around the clock and all you can do is plug your ears and listen to audio bible passages; or you are a mom with a handful of little humans needing your attention all day long so that you are mostly on your feet and the best you can do is stick bible verses on your refrigerator, your washroom mirror and everywhere else you might bump into during the day! (this last one I heard from Priscilla Shirer as her experience some years back).

What do you think matters more to God? The fact that we mark off some arbitrary standard (like closing out self-imposed rings of time and volume) or the fact that we are consistently making efforts to reach Him?

If you know anything about God’s love, you will agree with me that it is definitely the latter. That is why the Bible says that we should draw near to God and He would in turn draw near to us. (James 4:8) I dare say that when we stretch our hands towards Him, He closes the gap and pulls us into His awesome presence.

So daily, we fight the devil’s lies, we silence the guilt of not being able to spend as many hours as we would love to; and we just reach into God. 

We just sing a love-song to Him as we wake up, and we thank Him for every good thing He has blessed us with. We chew on some bible verse. We set reminders at different times to interrupt our day and lead us into His presence again even if for just a few minutes. We paste verses in our phone Notepads and our PC wallpapers. We subscribe to uplifting channels and we play gospel songs from our devices. We do everything to keep the connection with God intact in this busy and fast-paced world. 

We enjoy God on the days we get 15 minutes as well as the days we get 120 minutes.

Because really, it is our personal relationship with Him; our tête-à-tête; our rendezvous with the Lord.

He loves it. We love it. We meet with Him. We enjoy Him.

Therefore, if we should not worry about the turns that our daily devotions may take, the only thing that really bothers me is that I do not want to lose the fascination and the pleasure of going into God’s presence everyday.

I do not want to not-go. I do not want to not-want-to-go.

So, I pray, “May I never lose the wonder… Keep me interested. Draw me in. I want a deep and stayed hunger for Your presence, your Word and prayer. Help me to always come in. Every day. And to meet with You. Because You matter the most. You are my every reason. Dear Lord, help me to come in daily.” 🙏🏽

Closing exercise rings does have some value, devoting to meeting with God daily is valuable in every way!

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