Creating Intentional Space

I have a confession to make: I am highly distractable.

Whether it is my cell phone, email, Facebook page, Twitter account, or any number of other things going on in my life, I can go from be focused on my work to being intrigued by underwater basket-weavers in Zimbabwe in no time. It is for this reason that I need to be intentional about creating space in my life that limits the amount of ways that I can be distracted. This is why Theresa and I decided to take the long way home from Barcelona three weeks ago. At the end of a long and arduous journey walking alongside her father, we needed to create the space to exhale and begin to mourn his passing.

Last night I had a conversation with a group of people where I was asked about how I seek direction from the Holy Spirit. They were curious about the practices that I use in order to hear from the Lord. My response was that I generally start by seeking out solitude: making space, away from distraction, where I can sit and soak in the presence of our creator. I have to admit that creating this intentional space is difficult, and creates a palpable tension in my life, yet to not create these spaces limits my abilities as a leader, and as a shepherd. These spaces are not always as dramatic as taking the slow boat home from Barcelona, but always require me to be intentional in creating boundaries… for me these include losing my cell phone, not being able to see a screen of any kind, and maintaining a comfortable distance from other people.

The number of potential distractions in the life of a church leader are near infinite… yet our leadership and our people depend on us to make the space needed to commune with our God.

How do YOU go about creating intentional space to soak, process, and commune with our Creator?


About the Author: Matt Steen

I love Jesus, Theresa (my wife), the Redskins & Capitals, and am currently living in Waco, Texas where I am studying the finer points of BBQ (while working on my MDiv and MBA at Baylor University). When not studying, I serve church leaders through and am the Director of Connections for Harris Creek Baptist Church's Downtown Campus.