If you were to follow me on Twitter, you would see that my first tweet every day ends with the hashtag #kingsenglish. That is because I have started tweeting summaries of my quiet time reading. This is a post about why.
‘King’s English’ – great stuff!
The King’s English is a book that started out as blog posts during the year of the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible (KJV). It is a devotional book with a short reading for each day of the year. Each day takes one phrase from the KJV and explores it. The whole thing is online, and the brilliant author Glen Scrivener (@glenscrivener) tweets links to it each day.
Before I move on, it’s great! Glen has a phenomenal gift for capturing the great truths of Scripture, for finding Christ in the whole Bible, for expressing the heart and character of the Triune God. It reads like a wonderful mix of theology and poetry, and time and time again brings fresh excitement from old truths.
I strongly recommend checking it out online, or getting your hands on a physical copy if that’s your thing (it doesn’t have dates by the readings, so you can start whenever!).
But why #kingsenglish?
That’s all very well. Lots of people use devotional books to aid time with God. Mel is using one by Henri Nouwen at the moment. I’ve used a number before. Why tweet about it?
I had a bit of anxiety when I started doing it. It could very easily be seen as “Hey! Look at me! I’m having my quiet time now, aren’t I holy!” Maybe it has been seen that way by some people. Maybe it could be seen as a desperate bid to get Glen to follow me on Twitter, who knows!
But neither of those is why I did it. It boils down to a statement and a question. The statement: social media, and particularly my Twitter account, is a really important and central thing to my life which includes ups, downs, news, celebrations, the exciting, the mundane, the difficult, everything. The question: if that’s all true, why wouldn’t my daily walk with God be on there?
I’m part of a generation for whom – increasingly – if something doesn’t interact with my online life it probably doesn’t mean that much to me. Does my spirituality and faith mean something to me? Yes. Then it should be online.
If someone journaled everything that they ever did, and their journal never mentioned their relationship with Jesus, wouldn’t that be a worry? If my Twitter doesn’t mention it, I think that would be a worry.
Since I started…
Since I started tweeting my quiet times, I’ve noticed a few things. Put together, they mark the biggest development in my commitment to pursuing my relationship with God that I’ve had in a while.
First, I haven’t missed a day. And that hasn’t been difficult, where at other times in my life it has been. Twitter is one of the first things I check in the day, but I now don’t step into that world until I have spent time with God and have something to say on that platform. By relating my devotional time to something which means a lot to me, it serves as a hook, a trigger. It makes it connected to my day, not something I do ‘before I start my day’. That’s been cool!
Second, I engage more deeply with my quiet time, and with God during it. What I am reading from the Bible (and from Glen) doesn’t stop with me. I do something with it (in this case tweet it), and that should always be the case. It’s not a passive thing, but something that should spur us to action. This little action constantly reminds me of that, and with that in my brain I don’t engage passively. I want to get it.
Third, Twitter isn’t private, and I’ve had people engage with my tweets. That’s cool. Because a relationship with God isn’t a private thing. Sure, it is no-one else’s responsibility to cultivate but mine, but that doesn’t mean it exists only for me. If others aren’t benefiting or able to engage in something because of a deeper relationship I have with God, that probably means it either isn’t really deeper at all. Twitter just brings that to the fore.
Should you do it?
That’s a question only you can answer. But if social media is a part of your life and you want Jesus to be central to your life, maybe some of what’s helped me might help you!
What do you think? Any similar experiences? Maybe for you it isn’t Twitter but something else. I’d love to hear!