Posted by: Billy Marsh | August 21, 2007

A Word To Brothers and Beyond

“How long have you been walkin?” – That’s what a believer asked me right after we first met. “How long have you been walkin?” I was training him to take over a job I had been working for about 6 months, so we had an 8 hour shift to get to know each other. I had never been asked about my testimony in those terms. It was such a blessing to finally have someone ask me about my state in Christ in terms of an active relationship rather than a static moment in time (the date, hour, and so on of my time of conversion). I told him that it blessed me that he referred to my salvation experience as something that implied a real, personal relationship with the Savior. So, we continued to talk and tell one another of the grand “Walk” that each of us have had in both of our journeys with Jesus.

My word to brothers and beyond is mainly intended for my fellow seminarians (sisters too), but not exclusively (hence, the “beyond”), who are about to begin a brand new semester. I know many of us are taking larger loads of classes and juggling jobs, homework, families, and ministries; however, my heart always aches for the ministers in training who succumb to the busyness of the semester and fail to “walk with Jesus”. There is no greater joy or reward than intimately knowing the Savior and faithfully walking with him day by day. We, as the future leaders and workers of God’s church around the globe, must not neglect to live out daily what we are so burdened to lead others into at our churches and workplaces. So, here is my exhortation, and even more so I pray, my encouragement to you all: Have An Unhurried Quiet Time With The Lord.

Spiritual Leadership

This concept is probably one of the most valuable lessons that I have learned in my entire life. And, the man who taught it to me first as well as best was Henry Blackaby. In his book, Spritual Leadership, Blackaby taught that as a leader planned out his daily schedule, the most important slot on the day-timer must be “Unhurried Time With God”. I was taught in my teenage years the importance of having a quiet time, but no one ever impressed upon me the fact that not all quiet times are created equal.

I’m sure that most of you have quiet times of some sort, at least I will assume that you do. Ignorance is bliss. However, is it unhurried? This is the great wisdom which Blackaby so poignantly imparted to me, a young student who was in a hurry everyday to change the world and live life to the fullest. Before the Spirit impressed upon me the dire importance of spending unhurried time every day with God, I always seemed to cut my devotional time short somehow, if not altogether. Rarely would I ever finish reading what I intended to cover in the Word. Even more scarce was the time I spent in genuine prayer and not just ‘name dropping’ fifty requests and then asking the Lord “to handle it”.

Once I was gripped by the notion of an intentional, unhurried quiet time, I began waking up much earlier than normal. Later, I would find myself waking up earlier and earlier every day. Then, I found myself desiring to go to bed earlier each night so that I could wake up at the crack of dawn and spend the first few quiet hours of the day with the One who made it. Oh, what a blessed and fruitful time!

Of course, there are many benefits from having a quiet time such as serving with spiritual authority, the Word of God fresh on your heart, knowing you’ve prayed for the saints and sinners, having a spirit-filled ministry, and so forth. Still, all of those are merely consequences of walking with the Lord and drops in the bucket next to communing with Christ. Does your heart cry out everyday, “In the morning when I rise, Give Me Jesus!”? Or, are you content in keeping up a long-distant relationship with him as you go about your schedule, only talking to the Father seriously and personally once or twice a week?

Oh, my brothers and co-laborers in Christ, do not forsake walking with the Good Shepherd! There is no grade, test, quiz, book, schedule, or even extra minutes in the bed that serves as a worthy substitute for spending unhurried time with the Maker of the Universe. Don’t let Christ be reduced merely to the object of your theological persuasions instead of being the object of all your affection! Will you ‘walk’ with me this semester? May the Lord protect us from developing the ego that we can truly serve him and the church without actively walking with Jesus.

Morning Coffee

So, brothers, put on a pot of coffee and wake up with me at 5am. Or, use your lunch break. Or, perhaps stay up a little later, pushing the books aside at night. Whatever you decide, just please make it unhurried, unrushed. I pray that the Lord will cause our relationships with him to outshine all our academic achievements. So, may I ask, “How have you been walkin’?” and will you commit to walk in the Lord with me this semester?

To God Be The Glory.

“Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.”

~ Colossians 2:6-7 ~


  1. Thank you for these words, Billy. I hope this lands on many students at this Seminary.

  2. […] Marsh offers a word to those starting seminary back up this fall–have an unhurried quiet […]

  3. […] some timeless advice along the same lines as what I was trying to say in my recent post “A Word to Brothers and Beyond” concerning the absolute necessity for Christians, even more so, ministers in training, […]

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