A 15-Minute Devotional Outline

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This devotional outline takes around 15 minutes to complete. Begin by praising the Triune God, confessing your faith in him, and receiving instruction from one of the church’s catechisms. Then, pray a prayer of illumination before approaching the Word of God, and practice lectio divina (see “Lectio Divina: A Method for Daily Devotions”) with the ACTS Method: Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, and Supplication. After a special prayer or reading, conclude with the Lord’s Prayer. Optionally (*), begin by singing a hymn or psalm, and end with the doxology. Remember to enjoy your time with God: be reverent, but feel free to get a cup of coffee, light a candle, and softly play some worshipful music.

*Hymn or Psalm

Sing a hymn or a psalm (see Seedbed’s Metrical Psalter with hymn tunes).

The Gloria Patri

Pray or sing:

Glory be to the Father
and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost,
as it was in the beginning,
is now and ever shall be,
world without end. Amen, amen.

The Creed

“Receive, my children, the Rule of Faith, which is called the Symbol (or Creed. And when you have received it, write it in your heart, and be daily saying it to yourselves; before you sleep, before you go forth, arm you[rself] with your Creed” (Augustine):

I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth.

And in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord: Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary: Suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, died, and was buried: He descended to the dead: On the third day he rose again from the dead: He ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of the Father: From there he will come to judge the living and the dead:

I believe in the Holy Spirit: the holy catholic church: the communion of saints: The forgiveness of sins: The resurrection of the body: And the life everlasting. Amen.

Alternatively, recite the Nicene Creed.

Catechism Q&As

Choose a question or block of questions from:

Prayer for Illumination

Choose one or pray your own:

  1. “Open my eyes to see wondrous things in your word.” (Ps. 119:18)
  2. “What we know not, teach us. What we are not, make us. What we have not, give us.”
  3. “Blessed Lord, who caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning: Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which you have given us in our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.” (BCP)

Scripture

Follow a Bible reading plan or pick up with today’s readings in the Revised Common Lectionary:

Meditation

Meditation is active: break out your colored pens, wrestle with the text, take notes, and write down questions.

Prayer

Pray using the ACTS Method, allowing today’s reading(s) to fuel your prayers:

  1. Lord, I praise you because…
  2. Lord, I confess that…
  3. Lord, I thank you for…
  4. Lord, will you please… (remember church, family, world)

Contemplation

Rest and silently reflect in God’s presence.

Special Prayer or Reading

Choose a prayer book or spiritual classic and work through a portion of it each day (see “Recovering the Christian Spiritual Classics”).

Lord’s Prayer

Our Father, who is in heaven,
hallowed be your name;
your kingdom come;
your will be done;
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our sins,*
as we forgive those who sin against us.
And lead us not into temptation;
but deliver us from evil.
For yours is the kingdom,
the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever.
Amen.

*Luke’s version; Matthew’s version says debts.

*Doxology

Praise God, from whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him, all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heav’nly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
Amen.

*Benediction

If you are seeking God with family or others, a benediction may be fitting:

  • The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all. (2 Cor. 13:14)
  • “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.” (Php. 4:23)
Johnathan Arnold
Johnathan Arnold is a husband, father, and aspiring pastor-theologian, as well as the founder and president of holyjoys.org. You can connect with him on Twitter @jsarnold7.