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Abiding in Jesus When Motherhood is Distracting

During my teenage and university years, I prided myself on having a great devotional life. The moments I spent with God each day – study Bible and journal in tow, along with a myriad of devotional books – were of high quality. With few interruptions, that “quiet time” could extend for as long as I wanted it to that day.

Even during the first couple years of my marriage and ministry life, my devotional life thrived. Mornings in the office started with a deep dive into Bible study, and many nights before bed, I’d curl up with a devotional, podcast or other tool to guide me deeper into my relationship with Jesus.

I heard other people talk about struggling with maintaining a devotional routine,  and if I’m being honest – I didn’t really get it. I couldn’t understand what the struggle was – these habits of study and quiet came almost naturally to me.

Encouragement for the busy, tired, or overwhelmed mom struggling with the goal of abiding in Jesus. @mrslotanner #lacedwithpurpose

Transitioning to Motherhood

Then I became a parent.

My morning quiet time sessions were interrupted by a baby who needed to be nursed, changed or simply snuggled. The mornings that weren’t occupied with baby were filled with trying to catch up on laundry, household chores, or just to simply sleep.

Nighttime was no different – and on most nights I fell into bed too exhausted to even think, let alone study the Word or pray.

It was – and still is – a challenging season. While my little guy is now well into his second year, and our routine is a little more established, I’m still tired. Most nights I don’t sleep well. Mornings are often a disaster zone. Five minutes to myself – let alone an extended quiet time – feels like a luxury.

With my regular devotional routine out the window, I have had to learn how to spend time with Jesus on purpose during the crazy of my days. That has looked different in this season than in any other season of my life. But here is what I have learned – God’s presence doesn’t just abide in quiet time or Bible study.

Those things are important, and I value them highly. But He is present all the time, and I can find ways to intentionally, purposefully connect  with Him even in seasons when quiet time feels like a distant memory.

The Importance of Abiding In Jesus

What I have learned in this season in motherhood is an important lesson that has shaped the way I think about and connect with God. It’s this simple truth –

Habit can never replace the art of abiding with Jesus.

In John 15:5 Jesus says to His disciples:
I am the vine. You are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me, you can do nothing.”

I love that Jesus doesn’t say, “Those who have a great quiet time” or “those who study the Bible” or even “those who aren’t sleep deprived and wondering if they are losing their sanity.” He says those who remain in me. Those who abide.

What it looks like to Abide In Jesus

As a mom, I am learning that I’m capable of abiding in Jesus – and seeking out His presence – no matter what season I am in.

Sometimes, that looks like whispering quiet prayers during my day – in moments of excitement and gratitude, and also in moments of exhaustion and frustration.

Sometimes, that looks like playing my Bible reading for the day as I drive around my town waiting, praying, hoping that my little guy will nap – and reflecting on that instead of what is on the radio.

Sometimes, that means letting worship music become the soundtrack for my day, rather than the Wiggles, a local news station, or the latest Netflix show.

And sometimes it means taking the few spare minutes I do have – and saying no to social media and Amazon – and yes to a few quiet moments with Jesus.

Moms, no matter what season of life you are in – with toddlers, teenagers or adult children – we need to live it with purpose. That purpose means choosing to abide with Jesus daily – on days of quiet time and chaos, exhaustion and energy, frustration and fullness – because He is always present. It’s our job to plug in and remain steadfast, always abiding in Jesus.

Wondering how to practically do this abiding with Jesus? Check out the free Abide Guide for Moms in the Gift Bag for this event!

Looking for more thoughts on quiet time for moms? Check out this post by Julia.

Julia Ball of

Meet Julia:

Julia Ball is a Children’s & Families Pastor in Newfoundland, Canada. She is married to Andrew and the mom of an awesome toddler named Levi. Julia also serves as the Children’s Ministries Director for the Pentecostal Assemblies of Newfoundland and Labrador. Julia holds a BA in Biblical Studies & Theology (Tyndale University), as well as a Master’s degree in Evangelical and Charismatic Studies (University of Birmingham). She is passionate about children and their families growing in their relationship with Jesus, understanding the Bible, and becoming passionate followers of God. 

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