The word “devotional” is used in my vocabulary like the words “quiet time.” It’s something you do. It’s something every good Christian practices and knows the meaning of. But today I thought of that word differently. Or at least, I actually thought about what it really means.
The first part of the word “devotional” is “devotion.” Definitions for devotion are listed as: committed love, dedication, and enthusiasm. With this as the guidance for my daily devotional, I’ve always been concerned that I would grow bored of this small thing I do in the mornings, intended for focusing on committed love, dedication, and enthusiasm for God.
I sat on the front porch. It was a cool morning. Perfectly cool. Neither too cold nor too hot. I love summer for the very reason that I can do my quiet time outside, rather than in my room. I felt tingles of pleasure the moment I left the indoors.
There on the swing, with my Bible and journal in my lap, I tried to focus on this act of devotion. But I was being distracted. The birds sounded like they were singing to themselves. Then they were whistling to each other. Or maybe they were calling to me. Maybe they were saying, “look up and see!”
I did look up. I couldn’t help it. The sun was gloriously shimmering as it broke through the branches of the many trees in our front yard. The grass was that brilliant green that can never be captured in photographs. You just have to see it with your own eyes. Little, white, puffy flowers raised their heads just above the grass.
After a few seconds of gazing, I remembered that I was supposed to be spending time with God. As if we’d already been in the middle of a conversation, I smiled and told Him, “Your world is distracting me.”
Another time on the front porch, I began to write a poem. It is far from poetical excellence, but that doesn’t matter. There is nothing like gazing at creation to make you feel small and insignificant. Yet, there I was, talking to the God who’d made it all.
You would stoop to think of me. Me, the little one.
You would call me wholly Yours, to be Your little one.
You would make holy, pure—perfect for Your Holy One.
Speaking softly in my heart, the Spirit’s gentle nudge,
Keeps me safe, secure, and shorn, a humbled little one.
I cannot fathom why You’d choose, this tattered little one,
Call me lonely, call me poor, to be Your little one.
You would die a wicked death, a dark and angry road,
To be with me forevermore,
The filthy, wretched one.
A cost so dear, I cannot grasp
I’m just a simple one.
Your wisdom is to high for me, Your thinking out of reach.
I’ll snuggle deep into Your love,
Forever, always, Your little one