What is PiVAT? Four questions with your Day Planner - Not questions to answer... questions to ask... ask God! PiVAT includes Three Columns: PiVAT Questions - Time Slots - and God's To Do List for you (not yours)
PiVAT brings God's Plans for your day - PiVAT gives God your day planner, it helps you obey with time, so you fulfill your purpose every day!
PiVAT is an acronym for Prayer, Vision, Accountability, and Testimony - 4 Biblical Principles of Faithfulness
PiVAT is a change of direction - from man's way to God's way. PiVAT can be done in 5 minutes – Do PiVAT before dinner every day to get God’s plans for you for tomorrow, and finish His plans for you today. Proverbs 14:12 - There is a way that seems right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.
Isaiah 55:8 - For my thoughts are not your thoughts neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.
Jeremiah 29:11 – For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.
PiVAT has three columns: Left Column - PiVAT Questions, Middle Column - Time Slots 6 am - 10 pm, Right Column - God's todo list for you, not yours (that's PiVAT Maybe).
Left Column: PiVAT questions P rayer: What do you need most from God today? (You won't know, just ask Him. He’ll tell you.)
V ision: What is the #1 thing He is telling you to do today?
A ccountability: When is He telling you to do it? (The Specific Time) - Ask Him, He'll tell you.
T estimony: (a) The top 3 things God DID today, (as you're learning to obey), and (b) The top 3 things He REVEALED from His Word (during your PRISM time with Him).
Right Column: God's To Do list for you (not yours)
Middle Column: The Time Slot for each of His To Do's for you today.
Print the 7-Day PiVAT Journal -(and trim the margins to 9x7). You'll get a printed PiVAT Journal for three or seven days. It will include the pages you need for PiVAT, PRISM and Conversations. Or use any size blank notebook and just draw the columns. Norcom 9x7 Composition Notebooks are just $1 at Walmart. All hearwelldone.org tools printed out and trimmed margins will fit this size notebook.
Using PiVAT every day is a two-step process: 1) Do PiVAT before dinner, and 2)Check in with God throughout the day.
Step 1: Do PiVAT Before Dinner
Every day before you leave the office, or before you walk in the door, take 5 minutes and Ask God for HIS PLAN for you for tomorrow. (Don't wait until later, you'll be too tired; and don't wait until morning - by the time you get around to it, you might have missed something He had for you.)
Doing PiVAT before dinner every night gives opportunity before bedtime to share and pray with your spouse - what you (both) need most from God, and what He is telling you to do tomorrow. Doing this the day before also allows God to counsel you in the night season. (Psalms 16:7) By morning, God will confirm His plan in your spirit, or He may clarify your understanding of what He wants you to do today. Remember, God is not obligated to reveal everything that will occur tomorrow, but if we ask for His plan, He will tell us – specifically, and show us things to come.
Psalm 32:8 - "I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go - I will guide you with my eye upon you."
John 16:13 - But when he the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; He will speak only what he hears, and He will tell you what is yet to come.
Step 2: Check in with God throughout the day
Confirm His agenda throughout the day. Walk in the Spirit in time decisions. If a task takes longer than you expected, Ask Him whether He wants you to keep going - or set it aside and move on to the next thing He told you to do. This will train you to hear His voice, walk in the Spirit, and respond to people and situations as He directs.
Discern between PiVAT and PiVAT Maybe - When doing your PiVAT before dinner – ask God to help you discern between what God is telling you to do, and what you think you have to get done.Keep an ongoing PIVAT MAYBE To Do List!
PIVAT is God's plan for your day. PiVAT MAYBE is your to do list. Things will constantly "pop-up" during the day - things that you think you 'gotta do.' These ‘gotta do's’ are not necessarily God's To Do's for you. First put them on your ‘Scratch' PiVAT Maybe List at the bottom right of your PiVAT page. Those things that God doesn’t clearly confirm are for today… put on your ongoing PIVAT MAYBE To Do List - for God to confirm, delay or delete.
Screen all daily interruptions through Him. Don’t just add them to your PiVAT Right Column! Remember, the Right Column is only for God’s To Do’s for you today. When your day is interrupted, ask: "Is this a divine appointment or the devil's distraction to keep you from what God told you to do?" Ask God - He will tell you. This is not overkill. People who walk closely with God have ongoing conversation throughout the day. It's how they walk in the Spirit.
How To Fill Out PiVAT (*Do PiVAT before dinner every night) Step 1: Start with the Left Column first.
P: PRAYER - What do you need most from God today? You probably won't know. Ask Him, He’ll tell you. Ask God what you need most from Him for tomorrow. He knows more than you do. Remember, His ways and thoughts are very different from ours (Isaiah 55:7-9) and He knows what you need before you ask. (Matthew 6:8) Asking Him what you need most also prevents you from asking amiss. You may think you need a Cadillac when you really need contentment. Asking Him what you really need most, enables you to pray according to His will for you for today.
Don't think because things are going "OK" that you don't need anything from Him. To fulfill the purpose He has for you today - you willneed things beyond yourself. If you only knew what He can give - you'd be asking Him for more! and more often! See the PRISM Topic: What Does God Give? Ask Him what you need most from Him for tomorrow - He'll tell you - and then you can pray and ask in line with His perfect will. He'll tell you what He's getting ready to do - so you can agree with Him in prayer.
V: VISION - What is the #1 thing He is telling you to do today? Ask God for His #1 Priority for you today. This is not going to work, or going to school. Within the obvious obligations, what is the #1 Thing God wants you to do today? This might be something spiritual, or something very practical. It may be work related, family related or personal. It might be "leave work on time - to make it to your daughter's soccer game." Maybe... "spend concentrated time in prayer," or "call someone that God has placed on your heart." Maybe... "prepare today for next month's board meeting." Ask God, He'll tell you.
A: ACCOUNTABILITY – When is He telling you to do it? (The specific time) This will always be a specific time. 9:30 a.m., 12:00 noon, 4:30 p.m. etc. If God tells you to do something - He will also tell you when He wants you to do it. Just ask Him.
T: TESTIMONY – What did God DO today, and what did God REVEAL today? (a) What did God Do today? (Top 3 Things - as I'm becoming faithful to hear and obey) (b) What did God Reveal today? (Top 3 Things - through my PRISM Time in His Word?) Write them down.
The power of your testimony cannot be overstated. It is not just an encouragement to others - it's a way that God has designed for you to overcome the adversary! Rev 12:11 – "and they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony…" Your testimony encourages others, but it establishes your life in victory. Become skilled at the Testimony. It's a powerful weapon, and God deserves credit for all that He’s doing.
How To Fill Out PiVAT - Step 2: Fill out the Right Column next.
PiVAT is very different than ‘time management.’ With time management - you do it. With PiVAT, God does it! Remember, PiVAT - is God's To Do List for you - not your own. Ask God what "To Do's" He wants you to complete for tomorrow. You already know His Top Priority for your day (The #1 Thing He wants you to do) from the LEFT COLUMN of your PiVAT sheet. This is asking Him about the rest of the things He wants you to do today! Write only what He tells you - in the Right Column.
Don't just pick and choose from yourPiVAT MAYBE LIST, give God a blank canvas to start with (a blank right column) - and ask the Holy Spirit to reveal what items He wants there - not what you think should go there. You will find this right column is often much shorter - when God writes it - than when you fill it in. Again, just because you think something needs to get done, doesn't mean that it's God's will for you, or that it's God's Will for you for today. You can reference your PiVAT MAYBE To Do List after the fact, and double check with Him on anything He might want you to add, but it's best to just let God fill in the Right Column of His To Do's for you today - as the Holy Spirit prompts you.
You may want to reference PiVAT Weekly and PiVAT Monthly. These tools, similar to PiVAT - are not MAYBE To Do's, they are God's To Do's for you from a weekly and monthly perspective. They result from you seeking God for His plan for your week and your month. It's good to review PiVAT Weekly and PiVAT Monthly - to be sure that whatever God revealed that He wants you to do this week, or this month, that you are setting time aside at His direction to do these things on the day He prompts you!
How To Fill Out PiVAT - Step 3: Fill out the Middle Column last.
First look at Vision and Accountability in the Left Column and put today's #1 priority from God into its proper time slot. Then make sure every one of God's To Do's for you from the Right Column - have a corresponding time frame blocked out in the Middle Column. If they don't have a timeslot - they tend not to get done. Each day has many challenges and unexpected turns; many things will throw you "off-schedule."
God's will for you is a combination of: 1) What He revealed last night before dinner when you asked Him for His plan for you for today - and 2)What He instructs you in the moment, (by the Holy Spirit) as you check with Him throughout today. This practice of hearing and obeying both in advance and in the moment is an acquired skill. You will learn to tune your ear to His voice.
The goal is not to follow a schedule - (not even the one you believe God gave you yesterday before dinner - for today). The goal is to follow the HOLY SPIRIT (walk in the Spirit) and give Him full reign throughout your day. You will get better and better at discerning His voice when He reveals His plan for you for tomorrow. And you will get better at discerning His voice as He leads you through the day's adjustments. Remember, God isn't calling you to be a better time manager. He's calling you to be a better time obeyer! It’s how you walk in step with His will throughout the day - great joy awaits! You’ll be amazed at the journey!
Frequently Asked Question about PiVAT
What If I Get "Off-Schedule?" The goal isn’t staying on schedule, but walking in the Spirit. If you get off-schedule from what you feel He revealed yesterday for you to do today - Just check in with God. Ask Him if He wants you to accommodate the change, or postpone the interruption and be faithful to the time frames He revealed to you yesterday. This is a walking with God, "hearing and obeying" learning process; lots of opportunity for close communication - just what He wants! Don't think that God isn't interested in your schedule throughout the day. He loves the close communication. Nothing is too insignificant for Him. He delights in giving you His direction. Giving Him your day planner is demonstrating a heart fully devoted to Him. He is searching the earth to and fro looking to show himself strong on behalf of obeyers like you! (II Chronicles 16:9)
What If I Don't Finish Everything On God's To Do List For Me Today? The goal is NOT checking off lists - but doing what God told you to do today. If things remain undone from the Right Column (which should only contain God's TODO's for you today), then...
a) Ask God, "Was this one YOU or me? PiVAT is a learning process. Hearing and Obeying is a developed skill. Sometimes I found a couple of my “To Do's” crept in on the Right Column. Sometimes, the reason I didn't have time for them was because God never told me to do them in the first place! Or He wants me to do them, just not today. If God reveals this when you ask - just put them back on your PiVAT MAYBE List - for God to confirm, delay, or delete. Have you ever been beaten up by the devil for procrastinating? You spent all that time feeling guilty - when God never told you to do that in the first place! You'll find with PiVAT that God's To Do List for you - is usually shorter than yours (He isn't unrealistic like you are). It will also bring great freedom as the devil's "guilt-trip attempts" are exposed. Your job becomes simple: Ask God what to do, then do it. (He’ll help you!)
b) Ask God - "Now What?" If something really was God's To Do for you today (but it’s timeframe has passed); Ask Him if He still wants you to do it? He may say yes, or He may say move on to the next part of your day. If you realize you blew it, ask Him if He wants you to finish anyway, no matter how long it takes, or put it back on your PiVAT Maybe To Do List. (Don't just roll it over to tomorrow - Let Him set the agenda for tomorrow). But if He says - still do it; be faithful to complete the assignment and learn for next time. If you get sidetracked during your workday, that doesn't mean God wants you to take from family time to finish what you were supposed to do during business hours. God has a purpose for all timeslot. Evenings, weekends, and vacations are just as important to God as weekdays. His plans for you include a purpose for all of these. I do remember one time… I had left something undone that He had clearly told me to do that day. The Holy Spirit prompted me until I got back out of bed and finished it! Now I check with Him at the end of each day to be sure everything is complete. If He can trust us with the little things today, He can entrust bigger things to us tomorrow. Is that bondage? Operating under the law? Of course not! That's Grace at work; walking in the Spirit, God speaking to me, and me getting the absolute joy of obedience - no matter what He tells me.
Remember, faithful with little… then faithful with much. Bottom Line: God wants full rein to direct you 24 hours a day. You can trust Him with your Time Decisions! It's what true followers of Jesus do. (Because it’s what Jesus did)
Do I Have To Use The Full PiVAT Sheet? No. If you're an iPad, iPhone or Android junkie, or even old school (Franklin Planner, Day Runner etc). As long as your calendaring system includes time slots and a task list - you can just overlay the PiVAT Principles (Prayer, Vision, Accountability & Testimony) onto your planner. But, be honest with yourself; if you don't really have an effective time management tool, that you really use regularly, maybe you're more of a ‘back-of-the-napkin,’ sticky note person, or an 'I just keep it my head’ type... I would encourage you to pray about using PIVAT for 30 days; and also walk with somebody! (on a Daily Call - Start with the 3-Day-Challenge)
Do I Have To Use PiVAT On The Weekends?PiVAT Tools are just tools to help you - not a religion. Freedom is God's Way. But you can give God decision authority over your weekend, evenings, even your vacation days. You can trust him with your time decisions - even on Saturday and Sunday. Your time blocks may be fewer, God's To Do List may be shorter, but He STILL wants to reveal himself to you, and lead you in the way you should go, even during 'down time.' I've used PiVAT seven days a week for years. Sometimes I need it even more on weekends than week days. It's so easy to let time slip away - without consciously discerning between God's Way and man's way. Unfortunately, a no-decision, is still a time decision - which, in the absence of God's direction, is by default - man's way. On weekend days, PiVAT often reveals some different priorities than on weekdays. But God definitely gives Prayer, Vision, Accountability & Testimony on Saturday & Sunday as well as any other week day.
Final Thoughts on PiVAT If you're a time management guru - a day planner junkie, PiVAT may be culture shock. Just realizing that God wants to make the call on your time decisions - flies in the face of every time management principle you've ever been taught about "taking control of your life." Time Management is about taking control, but PiVAT (time obedience) is about giving up control. It’s surrendering your will to His will to get the blessing of His Way versus your way. But to fully surrender all time decisions to Him… it's unnerving, a complete paradigm shift.
You may struggle trusting Him at first - as if the Creator and Sustainer of every single person, place and thing in the universe might be overly taxed by my 'demanding schedule.' (Kinda funny when you think of it that way).
Just BEGIN. Start with the 3-Day Challenge. Before dinner tonight, start with a blank PiVAT page and ask God to fill it with HIS PLAN for you for tomorrow. You will find that over time - you won't get your to do's and His To Do's for you - mixed up as much. You will really start to recognize his voice so clearly, and His mid-course corrections during the day. Not only will your relationship with Him deepen significantly, you will discover true success like you have never imagined.
On the other hand, if you've never really done the day-planner thing; if you prefer "flying by the seat of your pants," and day planners are just slightly better than a root canal... I would so encourage you: Trust God with this daily journey. Just ask Him each day for His Plan for you for tomorrow. He knows you - He made you - He wired you - He loves you. His plans for you are way better than yours. He will just start simply, giving you plenty of space. He longs for close communion with you - and I'm not talking about sacraments or church services - but intimate relationship.
You have no idea what you're missing until He starts making your time decisions! It's what being a "follower" of Jesus Christ really is, and it's where walking in the Spirit happens every day. He longs to lead you in the dance of life. His life for you! You cannot imagine the wonderful journey He has in store. He wants you to live your best life. The Life He has for you. Call us - we'd love to pray for you and encourage you as you start this journey.