If you have been around Christians or churches for any amount of time you have no doubt heard about devotions. To the new or non-Christian, this word is foreign. In Christian-speak, a devotion is time spent in private prayer, Bible reading, or other acts of worship (e.g. singing, Scripture meditation, etc.). It is the personal and private worship of God.
As with all important things, devotions are often talked about among Christians. However, as with all often talked about things, devotions can easily become prey to cliche in the Christian mind. And, as always, cliche robs profound truths or practices of their significance.
But, we must fight such a temptation for, as J.C. Ryle points out, our private practice will always lead the way.
We may be very sure that men fall in private long before they fall in public. They are backsliders on their knees long before they backslide openly in the eyes of the world. Like Peter, they first disregard the Lord’s warning to watch and pray; and then, like Peter, their strength is gone, and in the hour of temptation they deny their Lord.
Oh, let us keep an eye continually upon our private devotions! Here is the essence, and substance, and backbone of our practical Christianity. Sermons, and books, and tracts, and committee meetings, and the company of good men, are all good in their way; but they will never make up for the neglect of private prayer.
Mark well the places, and society, and companions, that keep your hearts from communion with God, and tend to make your prayers difficult. “There be on your guard.”
Observe what friends and what occupations leave your soul in the most spiritual frame, and most ready to speak with God. “To these cling and adhere to tightly.” If you will only take care of your prayers, I will promise that nothing will go wrong with your soul. (Taken from Practical Religion).
So don’t scoff at devotions. Do them. Protect yourself from public disgrace by making sure you are active in private grace.
So, what is your practice of devotions look like? Are you reading God’s good Word? Are you going to Him in prayer? Are you enjoying Him alone? All who thirst, go have yourself a good devotion and find Him ready to pour out grace! “Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need” Hebrews 4:16.