A few years ago, I decided to take this whole "quiet time" thing pretty seriously. I would find a quiet room, shut the door for privacy, and plant my face on the floor. I'd begin to pray fervently for several minutes until the busyness of my day began to distract me: that next meeting coming up, the big deadline, or where I could buy flowers for my wife on the way home from work. I found that staying focused on my prayers was hard. On top of that, the devotions I found on my BIble App began to feel a little stale or short. They became just another thing for me to read and scroll quickly through on my phone. Then I started something new: I started to journal. I began to dive into Scripture using the SOAP method: Scripture, Observations, Applications, and Prayer. I'd open up my Bible and read a short passage or section, maybe 10-20 verses. I'd write down in my journal all the parts of SOAP; the Scripture I read, any observations I could take from it, how they could apply to my life and then I'd write my prayer down. I found that just simply writing things down helped me to focus and stay on track. This was groundbreaking for me. Suddenly my quiet time went from wandering thoughts to a clear plan to connect with Jesus. When I started SOAP, I'd simply write my prayers down in my journal. I'd always finish with the same sloppy, "Amen" scribbled at the bottom, like a signature. But recently, once I've written down my prayer, I've begun to go back and read it out loud to God. That subtle change has made an incredible difference in the worth of my quiet time. Maybe your quiet time includes journaling or using the SOAP method. Maybe it's sitting on the porch in silence, or maybe it's letting the words of a worship song wash over you for 15-20 minutes. The most important part about having a quiet time is that we create a margin in our lives for God to speak. It's not necessarily what we do, for we all have different needs and can connect with God differently, but that we schedule a time to spend with Him and then actually do it. We have to keep experimenting with what that quiet time looks like until we get a good combo to spend time with God. To spend time with God, you'll find that you might have to plan ahead, create a schedule and often do it when it feels like there are so many other things that need your attention. But we have to put that first if we expect to be able to help others. Think of the oxygen masks on an airplane: you have to put your own mask on first so you will be able to help everyone around you. The moments that you spend with God are what define your relationship.