Having a quiet time with God

Like so many others, I started running during lockdown. I needed a break from sitting at a desk all day. I wasn’t training for anything, it was just to get out and stretch my legs. After a while I started to set myself goals and trained to run further and faster. This continued for a few years but then last winter I got out of the way of it and stopped. I wanted to get going again but I told myself Winter was the wrong time of year to start, wait until Spring when it’s warmer! Spring arrived, but the running didn’t really start. I went out occasionally but I had lost my pace and the energy to run as fast and long as I used to. I dipped in and out of running for a few months heading out when I felt like it and saying, this is it, I’m going to keep running.

Enough was enough, I wasn’t running consistently. I had always thought about running a marathon at some stage but I definitely couldn’t now. I’m not ready for it. I signed up to a running app I used in the past. I have now set myself goals for the next 9 months until the Belfast Marathon. There will be some short runs, faster runs and long runs with a few events thrown in to give me a target. 5 weeks in and so far so good, I haven’t missed a run and I’ve completed my first 10k event.

Recently on our stories I asked how many take time to regularly pray and read the bible. It’s a struggle we all face at some stage. Too busy, too tired, I’m not learning anything. 

I’m definitely no expert and I struggle to read consistently, but I want to share some tips that I’ve been given or read about to help you get back on track.

Start Small

Start small, don’t set unrealistic targets of an hour with God, start with 5 or 10 minutes a day. You will naturally start to spend longer than 5 minutes once you are in a routine.


Either pick a book to study and read a chapter each day or follow a bible study/devotional book. If using a devotional book, I would encourage you to full read the full chapter and not just the few verses mentioned each day.


Don’t feel like you are learning anything? Finding it boring? Persist at it. Start by asking God to speak to you each day. And keep going, you will learn!


Ask God to keep you focussed, for ears to hear and a for an understanding of the passage you are studying.


Write notes about what you are reading – this can help you keep focussed and you can look back over what you have learned the previous day. Ask yourself these questions:

  • When is it?
  • Where is it?
  • Who’s involved?
  • What happened?
  • What did I learn?
  • How can I apply it to my life?
  • Is there a key verse that stands out?

Be accountable

Partner with someone and read with them, your husband/wife, a friend, a sibling. Share what you learn with each other each week or two.

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