Do you ever just feel so busy you don’t even know what to do? If I’m not careful, my schedule can get out of control—and fast. I’m sure you know the feeling. It seems every other commercial on television or online depicts someone who has their life more put together than I do. All day long, we are bombarded with subtle messages telling us to do more and be more things to more people in more ways. It’s exhausting.

As a culture, we are overloaded and distracted. How much time have you spent on social media today? How about your phone? How about in front of a computer? In today’s world, distraction is par for the course—and it is robbing us of a deeper relationship with God.

Years ago, I asked God to increase my hunger for Him. His response to me marked a turning point in my life.

At the time, I was an exhausted young mother of four children living in survival mode. John was on the road preaching a majority of the time, and I felt absolutely overwhelmed. I knew that I needed help—that to get through this season, I needed more of God’s presence in my life—so I began to pray that He would increase my hunger for Him.

Then one day while writing in my journal, I heard the Holy Spirit whisper, “Lisa, if you are not hungry for Me, it is because your life is too full of other things.”

To develop a hunger for Him, I would have to fast. At the time I was nursing, so I didn’t fast food, but I did lay aside the distractions…the things I picked up when I felt lonely, bored, hurt, or angry. If I truly wanted more of God, I would have to begin to let these things go and make room.

I turned off the TV, the novels, and the magazines.

I put down my phone and stopped answering it every time it rang.

I began to allow the discomfort of being a young mother, often home alone due to John’s travels, to drive me into God’s presence.

It wasn’t easy, but looking back I know it was a pivot point for me. That was more than twenty years ago, but it set my life on a different trajectory—one where I first and foremost looked to God for what I needed instead of quick fixes to get me through the day.

I don’t know what stage of life you find yourself in. Maybe you are working your way through school. Perhaps you are newly married or a recent parent trying to figure things out. Some of you may be deep in the trenches of marriage and raising children, and still others of you might have kids who are grown who now have kids of their own.

But regardless of where you find yourself, know this: You are not alone in the challenges of your season, and you need God’s presence in your life to do your season well. And if you are anything like I was, that means you’ll need to make some sacrifices.

I realize the distractions of today exceed my ability to have even imagined them back then, but I encourage you to make some intentional choices and make room for God. If you aren’t hungry for God, maybe it’s time you stop for a moment and ask Him, “Where am I trying to fill my desire for You with other things?”

Like the woman at the well, we often try to drink from wells that don’t satisfy—and we need to come back to the one who offers us living water and drink deeply. Jesus told her:

“Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” —John 4:13–14 ESV

Friend, Jesus is the source of all your life. Years from now, having a perfect house won’t matter, that new Netflix series will be a thing of the distant past, the likes you got on social media will have lost their luster, and the time you spent glued to a phone will be shown for the waste of time that it is.

You, friend, are the gatekeeper of your world. Choose carefully what you allow in. As you remove the distractions and make room for God, you will recover the hunger He meant to lead you into the secret place of His presence, where you will find what you need.