Thursday, December 14, 2006

I Am "Personal Quiet Time" Challenged - or - The Tyranny of The Personal Quiet Time Mongers

I just came across this at Chalcedon's blog section of their website. I'm thankful to see such a critique of one of pietistic Protestantism's sacred cows, the "personal quiet time." It is pointed out that the personal quiet time is nowhere commanded in Scripture, nor even shown as an example, yet it is put forth as one of the top barometers of spiritual life. I can testify to this fact quite readily. Just last night in our "home group" bible study, several people talked about struggling with keeping up their quiet time, and one claimed to realize that our acceptance with God is not based upon our works so even when she missed her personal quiet time, she could still know she was accepted by God.

A couple of months ago at an initial meeting for a men's ministry, a questionnaire was given out to determine how our lives were lived. All kinds of questions were asked, and many were the wrong questions, and therefore unanswerable, so "wrong" answers were guaranteed to come from me. Many were scaled answers rated from zero to 10. One of the most important was about "personal quiet time." I answered with a zero, and wrote my own note that said I don't believe that a "personal quite time" as taught by evangelicals was necessary for the Christian life.

Don't get me wrong. If somebody has this type of discipline, then fine. Good for them. But I don't. I pray, I read the bible, and God knows I sit quietly for periods of time, but it doesn't mesh like I've been taught at all. But it's held over people's heads as a form of guilt manipulation. I'm glad I've discovered this and now I rejoice that I'm spared this tyranny.

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