Do you ever feel like you just can’t connect with God? Like your prayers bounce off the ceiling and His voice is drowned out by the noise of life? You’re not alone. We all go through seasons where God feels distant.
But the truth is, God wants to meet with you. He desires intimate fellowship with each of His children. Though the distractions and busyness of life can make it challenging, there are practical steps you can take to be alone with God and grow closer to Him.
- God created you for intimate fellowship with Him and longs to meet with you.
- Jesus modeled a lifestyle of solitary prayer and communion with the Father.
- Solitude and silence open your spirit to receive from God.
- Fasting helps intensify your focus and hunger for God’s presence.
- Extended times of worship invite God’s manifest presence.
- God speaks through His word – feast on Scripture in your quiet time.
- Journaling captures the thoughts and revelations God gives you.
- Set aside regular blocks of time to be alone with God.
- Find a private place away from distractions to meet with Him.
God Desires Intimate Fellowship with You
God loves you immensely. More than you could ever fathom. And because of His great love, He yearns for close fellowship with you.
From the very beginning, God created humanity for relationship. After making Adam, God declared, “It is not good for the man to be alone” (Genesis 2:18). We are made for connection – first and foremost with God, and also with others.
King David captured the tender intimacy God wants with you when he described the Lord as his shepherd. He wrote, “He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside still waters” (Psalm 23:2). What beautiful imagery of the gentle, caring God who wants you to rest in His presence and be refreshed by His Spirit.
In Jeremiah 31:3, God says, “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with lovingkindness.” His heart yearns for you. He delights in you and sings over you (Zephaniah 3:17). No matter what you’ve done or where you’ve been, God’s arms are open wide to welcome you into His presence. He desires close fellowship with you.
Jesus Modeled a Life of Solitary Prayer
During His earthly ministry, Jesus maintained a vibrant connection with the Father through regular habits of solitary prayer. Though He was God in flesh, He still recognized the importance of quiet time receiving from the Spirit.
Mark 1:35 says, “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.” Despite the pressures of ministry and the constant needs of others, Jesus prioritized intimate communion with the Father.
Before performing miracles or making major decisions, Jesus withdrew to be alone with God and seek His direction. “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed” (Luke 5:16). His powerful life flowed from a deep well of time alone with the Father.
Even during times of exhaustion and grief, Jesus turned to solitary prayer for comfort and strength. On the night before His death, Mark 14:34 says, “He took Peter, James and John along with him, and he began to be deeply distressed and troubled. ‘My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,’ he said to them. ‘Stay here and keep watch.’ Going a little farther, he fell to the ground and prayed.”
Jesus’ example shows that intimacy with God requires intentionality. You have to value it and create space for it amidst the pressures of life. Just as Jesus retreated to pray alone, you need to regularly set aside time to be still before God.
Solitude and Silence Open Your Spirit
In order to clearly hear God’s gentle whisper and connect with His Spirit, you need to intentionally step away from life’s noise and distractions. Solitude and silence position your spirit to receive from God.
Psalm 46:10 urges, “Be still, and know that I am God.” As you quiet your mind and turn off the inner monologue, you make room for God to speak. Pastor Dallas Willard said, “Hurry is the great enemy of the spiritual life.” Rushing dulls your spiritual senses.
Silence allows you to tune out the voices competing for your attention and focus singularly on God. Psalm 62:1 says, “Truly my soul finds rest in God; my salvation comes from him.” In stillness, your soul is restored.
Solitude removes outer distractions so you can become fully present to God. Jesus advised, “But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen” (Matthew 6:6). Finding a private space helps you encounter God intimately.
Setting aside regular time alone with God will heighten your spiritual senses. You’ll begin noticing His whispers throughout the day and learn to tune your ear to His voice always.
Fasting Deepens Your Hunger for God
Fasting is a powerful tool to increase your hunger for God’s presence. When you deny your body’s cravings, your spirit becomes unclouded so you can focus more intently on God.
Jesus fasted 40 days in the wilderness to prepare for ministry. The scriptures say, “After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry” (Matthew 4:2). Fasting sharpened Christ’s spiritual senses and dependence on the Father.
The earnestness of fasting unveils the shallowness of many of our pursuits. Things we think we need become less important as our hunger for God increases. Fasting cleanses your spiritual palate to taste God’s goodness.
As Paul wrote, “I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified” (1 Corinthians 9:27). Just as fasting cleanses your physical body, it also purifies your spiritual self.
Pick one day a week or month to fast. Drink water and juices, but avoid food. Use the time you’d spend eating to pray and read Scripture. Fasting releases you from slavery to the natural so you can connect with God’s supernatural presence.
Linger in Extended Times of Worship
One powerful way to be alone with God is through extended times of worship. Singing intimate love songs to Jesus and meditating on the lyrics opens your heart to experience His presence.
The tabernacle in the Old Testament housed the very presence of God on earth. 1 Chronicles 16:37 says Levite musicians were appointed to “minister regularly before the ark of the covenant of the Lord, to commemorate, thank and praise the Lord, the God of Israel.” Their worship invited God’s manifest presence.
When you make time to wait in God’s presence with thanksgiving, He draws near. The Psalms exclaim, “Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise!” (Psalm 100:4). Gratitude postures your heart to receive from Him.
Play instrumental worship music as backdrop to your quiet time with God. Close your eyes and picture Jesus. Sing love songs directly to Him. Ask the Holy Spirit to wash over you and soak in the sweetness of His presence.
God Speaks through His Word
In your times alone with God, let His written word soak deep into your spirit. The Bible is the primary way God communicates with His children. Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”
Meditate on Scripture – slowly chewing each word and asking God to speak to you through the passage. The Psalms say, “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you” (Psalm 119:11). As you fill your mind with truth, it renews your thoughts and transforms you into Christ’s image.
Don’t just skim the Bible for information. Let the words penetrate deep and settle into your spirit. Jeremiah 15:16 says, “When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight.” Feast on God’s word and let it nourish your soul.
Approach the Bible with an expectant heart. Write down insights God gives you. Over time, you’ll notice the scriptures coming alive to you in fresh ways. The Holy Spirit will make them jump off the page right into your current life situations. God’s living word never returns void but accomplishes His purposes (Isaiah 55:11).
Journal to Capture God’s Thoughts
Journaling helps you cement the things God deposits in you during quiet times. Through writing, you process your encounters with God and integrate them into your inner life.
The act of journaling also aids in hearing God’s voice. As you free flow your thoughts onto pages, you make room for the Holy Spirit to deposit His impressions. Capture both your end of the conversation as well as the insights God speaks into your spirit.
Habakkuk 2:2 says, “Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald may run with it.” Journaling helps crystallize the things God impresses on you so you can live them out and share them with others.
Your journal provides an encouraging record of God’s dealings that you can look back on. When you re-read older entries, you’re reminded how faithful God is to speak to you. The progression of revelation you gain over months and years spent with God will inspire growth in your faith and intimacy with Him.
Schedule Regular Time with God
Consistent time alone with God is crucial for growing in intimacy with Him. You need extended, unrushed periods of quietness to hear His voice and allow Him to renew your spirit.
Set aside at least 20-30 minutes daily to meet with God, ideally in the morning before life gets busy. Psalm 5:3 says, “In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.” Morning quiet times orient your heart to God’s presence for the day.
You may also want to schedule in weekly or monthly extended times of seeking God – 2-3 hours is ideal. Jesus would often withdraw for a full night of prayer, communion and listening to the Father. Extended times provide space for God to do deeper work.
Protect these special appointments with God and make them top priority. Don’t allow other commitments to infringe. Consider it your most important meeting of the day. Just 10 minutes of God’s presence can refresh you more than hours of any other activity!
Find a Private Location to Meet with God
To fully engage with God, find a quiet spot free from intrusions and noise. Most people find their homes the best place to retreat alone with God. Jesus said, “But when you pray, go into your room, close the door…” (Matthew 6:6). Have a designated prayer room or chair where you regularly meet with God.
Early morning before others wake up is an ideal time for solitude. You can also take prayer walks outside or spend time with God in your car during lunch break. Nature settings like parks or trails offer reflections of God’s glory.
On occasion you may want to get away for a night or more at a cabin or retreat center specifically to seek God. Jesus withdrew to the lonely wilderness where He could fast, pray and listen freely to the Father without interruption.
Pastor Bill Johnson writes, “God’s primary way to grow the church is through prayer meetings. The primary way to fuel those prayer meetings is by cultivating a prayer life among its members.” Draw near to God in prayer and you will experience life change.
God loves you deeply and desires close fellowship with you. Though it takes intentionality, you can cultivate a vibrant prayer life by putting first things first. When you consistently make time to be alone with God, you will watch your spiritual life be transformed.
As you withdraw from life’s noise and distractions, your ability to hear God’s voice will increase. Fasting and extended times of worship intensify your hunger for God’s presence. Fill your spirit with Scripture truth and capture God’s impressions through journaling.
Schedule regular blocks of time to meet alone with God. Find a private location without intrusions. Determine that your quiet time is a top priority not to be crowded out.
You’ll be amazed at how God powerfully meets you as you diligently draw near to Him. His presence brings fullness of joy. He will whisper His love and direction for your life. He desires nothing more than for you to know Him intimately.