Someone recently asked me during Lent how I managed to get prayer done at home. They were wondering how to avoid distractions. I have a spouse, 2 children, and an extremely spastic dog. It was a valid question. I avoid distraction in three ways typically–
1) Plan my prayer for a time when everyone is gone.
2) Pray after everyone gets in bed.
3) Leave and pray somewhere else.
I highly encourage you to both make a space in your home for encountering God and find a space you can flee to for sanctuary. Your space at home can be as simple as a chair in the corner with your Bible resting next to it and a perhaps a candle. In our first home, I had an actual prayer closet. It was not more than three feet by four feet. It housed a chair and a small shelf for a candle and Bible.
Outside of my home, I have two spaces for God that I go to regularly. One is what I call my “secret spot” or “sit spot.” This spot is in nature. I go there every Monday for an hour or two at a minimum. I sit beneath a Sweet Gum tree, face north and gaze over a small pond. It is both a place of prayer and study. I have a routine or ceremony of prayer that I do each time that I go. I also take time to observe, meditate, wander and explore. Those Monday times are frequently my Sabbath.
My second space for God away from home is the chapel of a nearby hospital. Hospital chapels are great places to prayer. You can access them 24 hours a day, seldom anyone else comes in, they are extremely quiet, and no one would ever think to look for you there. Mine conveniently won’t allow a cell phone signal. Most are small, sparse, reverent places of tasteful beauty. Check one out near you.
Lastly, the single most important feature of any space for God that you select will be convenience. If it takes you more than 5 minutes to get there, then consider a different spot. If you life is so frenzied that you can’t find peace in your own home, then you probably don’t have a luxury of time. The more convenient your spaces for God are the more likely you are to use them. My sit spot is right at five minutes from my home and I have a routine of going there at least weekly. The hospital chapel is perhaps three minutes at most and it is along my drive to and from work.
Seriously consider how you can physically make a space for God. We have whole rooms dedicated to sleeping, eating, preparing food, bathing and entertainment in our homes. Where does God fit? If you don’t know then create something. Once again, simplicity and convenience are critical aspects of this important choice.
Blessings to you from the Practical Disciple as you seek to make space for God in your life.