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Seven Up

Who would have guessed that COVID could turn out to be a time of spiritual joy and rejuvenation?! Here's what happened to me.

I like to think of myself as a spiritual person, but for the life of me I never could stick to any consistent devotional or meditation. I bought workbooks, prayer notebooks, made a schedule, and set aside a location. But nothing worked. And then there was COVID.

Right before the COVID lockdown, our church had a women's event. It was the last event I attended before the lockdown, and for health reasons my husband and I have been in pretty heavy quarantine for about ten months since. At the meeting, one woman described a technique for doing devotionals she called 'Seven Up.' The idea was simple: no matter what you have in store for the day, the first 7 minutes you are awake, you spend with God.

Seven minutes? Shoot, I could do that!

Girl angel sitting among flowers
Seven minutes of quiet

The next morning, when the alarm clock went off, I did what I always do. I rolled over and grabbed my phone. But this time, instead of checking the dire news of the day, I decided to try out this Seven Up thing.

I found a free App called, easily enough, Bible. I scrolled through the devotional topics and picked one that sounded interesting. The devotional was brief and Bible verses were attached right to it, in just about any translation I wanted to select. Bam! I was done in less than 7 minutes.

This went on for a week and then it occurred to me, These verses are so good, I wish I could remember them all day. So I found The Bible Memory App. I took one of the verses of the day and practiced filling in blank words until I could say it by myself. It wasn't really long-term memorization, more just a way to meditate. It was free to start with, but I liked it so much I paid $20 for it when I used up the free memory.

Another week in, and I was humming a song I had heard in church and I looked it up on YouTube. There are a jillion songs to choose from, and I happened upon a guy with an incredible voice who sings a capella, David Wesley, When I Was Lost.

And just like that, 7 minutes grew to as much as half an hour, and to my utter astonishment, I haven't missed a day in 10 months.

The brilliance of this Seven Up technique is that it works with my character flaws. I now am at peace with the fact that I AM going to stay in bed for half an hour after I wake up, and I feel no more guilt over the fact that the first thing I do when I wake up is grab my phone!

~Lee W.

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