"During this morning's quiet time, it dawned on me -- well before dawn -- that I've become dependent on time alone with God. And the only way I can get it is to get up early. Of course in Colorado, rising before the sun often brings the benefit of actually seeing the "purple mountains majesty." But that stunning view of Pike's Peak alone isn't enough to wake me. It's what happens when I miss that window that motivates me to roll out of bed."
I wrote that in 2006. And it's still true. Today I had to roll out of bed on Steve's side of the bed because our three-year-old was camping out on the floor beside mine, and mercifully, still asleep. He wakes up earlier than any of the other littles. 5:30 isn't unheard of.
Usually he joins me for coffee, preferring to drink the sips I've forgotten, once they're cooled. (Truth be told, it's Steve who gets up even earlier than me, and brews a pot of coffee. Not sure I'd be able to get up early without him!) He's also taken to grabbing the journal I keep for him, along with a sharpie, and scribbling on the empty pages. By now, nearly every page is full; half with my prayers for his present and future, half with his doodles. I think the doodles will mean more to me someday than any words I've written.
"Nothing gets me off to a worse start than oversleeping only to wake to the sound of kids already up and raring to go. No quiet. No alone time. And no peace. I need the daily direction I get when I spend time reading the Bible. The Psalms and Proverbs are especially helpful during this demanding season of rearing small children. Having uninterrupted time for listening for God's voice -- specifically asking Him what the priorities for the day should be -- and meditating on what He's already said to me in his Word, has become the most important thing I do each day. When I don't, I feel like a ship without a rudder and a car with no gasoline. I lack both direction and power."
I need this reminder. It seems I'm motivated to get quiet and listen in seasons. But never do I not need it. I just forget. Or get too busy. Lord, remind me.
"It really does make a difference.
"Feeding Your Soul by Jean Fleming talks about how to have a quiet time. It's a very practical handbook that ends with a prayer that includes the line, "Make me what You had in mind when You created me ..." I love that image of a blueprint for my life; of a master designer drawing up plans for what my life should be. That's not to say I always conform to the plan. And often what should be is not what is."
I love that line even more, now that we have children. I want so much for them to become the people God had in mind when He created them. There's nothing I want more.
And so I get up early again. Today and tomorrow and the next day. There's just something about early.
O God, You are my God;
Early will I seek You;
My soul thirsts for You;
My flesh longs for You
In a dry and thirsty land
Where there is no water.
So I have looked for You in the sanctuary,
To see Your power and Your glory.
Because Your lovingkindness is better than life,
My lips shall praise You (Psalm 63:1-3).