"The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit." - Psalm 34:18
God is always with us, no matter what we go through in life. He understands our pain and sorrow, and He offers comfort and salvation. If you are feeling lost or disconnected from God, here are seven ways to connect with God again:
- Prayer: There is a lot of evidence to suggest that prayer has physical benefits. For example, studies have shown that prayer can help reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and improve heart health. Prayer also seems to have a positive effect on the immune system, and may even help fight cancer. If you find yourself getting frustrated in prayer, you are not alone. You can read about that here.
- Reading the Bible: If you're looking to start reading the Bible, but don't know where to start, here are some suggestions. Start with the Gospels, which tell the story of Jesus' life and ministry. Another good option is the book of Psalms, which is full of beautiful poetry and prayers. You can also read the New Testament, which tells the story of Christianity from its beginning. My favorite is Philippians. It's full of joy and encouragement!
- Meditation: There are many different ways to meditate, but the basic idea is the same. You focus your thoughts on a specific object or mantra, and you allow all other thoughts to pass by without paying attention to them. This allows you to relax and focus on the present moment. I consider meditation a form of prayer. Specifically Centering Prayer which you can find out more at http://www.centeringprayer.
- Fasting: Start small. Give up one thing at one meal. Build up to more. Let the process remind you that you rely on God.
- Worship: spend 3 minutes each day loving God. That's it. I cannot stress the difference that this can make. I'd love to hear your story once you do this for a few weeks.
- Service to others: Jesus said that we should love our neighbor as ourselves. When you serve others, you are showing love in action.
- Witnessing to others: Note this doesn't say "converting others." It is letting others see God in you and telling them the message that they are loved.
No matter how you choose to grow your faith, the most important thing is that you make the effort. When we put in the work, we not only benefit ourselves but also bring glory to God. I encourage you to try out some of these tips and see how they work for you. As always, feel free to reach out if you have any questions or need help getting started.
P.S. - Let me hear from you! What are some of your ways to connect to God?