As the sun begins it’s stretch into the sky, my alarm goes off on the nightstand beside me. I slowly drag myself out of bed and stretch my body attempting to get muscles moving once more and it’s clear to me in seconds they would rather be tucked back in my warm bed. My feet barely leave the ground as I point them in the direction of coffee. Shuffling towards the kitchen while rubbing my eyes I’m lucky not to make contact with any door frames. I can barely see. The light is dim. I need that coffee. The minute it takes to brew feels like an eternity and I’m hesitant to create any noise that might waken my 2 year old. These moments are meant for me and God.
With coffee in one hand and a notebook in the other I scramble off to find my Bible. After I have collected everything I settle into my corner, comfy and secure. I begin to pray. After prayers I read. It’s God and I. Together in the quiet of the morning.
Sounds idyllic, doesn’t it? Time with God at dawn. Moments set aside for reflection and prayer. The truth is it’s more like a duel than a sunrise symphony.
It’s not that I don’t love God, I do. It’s not that I don’t respect God, I do. It’s just that in the morning, at the crack of dawn before the world awakes I’m probably a little too me when I face God. I ramble about anything and everything in my thoughts. As I’m not reading for a purpose there’s very little to direct me and my thoughts can seem scattered and confused. While reading I’ve been known to complain to God, cheer to God, reject some rules and find myself pushed in to the reality of what it means to be a follower. Some days I struggle to stay awake and most days it’s not pretty.
It’s funny really. When I’m writing a sermon I pray with a purpose. I’m composed and directed. Things have a plan and I listen and reflect and follow as I’m supposed to. Without a plan I’m all over the map. Without a plan it’s chaos. These mornings aren’t perfect but they’re me. This time set apart from God is one on one time with no real purpose. It’s rather liberating really.
This ritual is fairly new. Adopted out of the realization that I far too often neglect time with God independent of work. I came to the conclusion after one too many days away that I needed to schedule God in as he’s too easily pushed to the side.
I’m probably not alone in this. Life is busy and in this modern age we’re always moving, thinking and saying we’ll get to reflection next week. Time set aside for quiet reflection is frowned upon as we could be using that time to do something.
I’m here to tell you it’s okay to sit. I’m actually getting more accomplished now. I waste less time on the internet. I am more invested in the day, in what is happening right now. Starting the day off with God means I actually carry God with me. It’s a nice feeling.
It’s okay to sit. It’s ok to reflect. There is nothing wrong with stopping. We all need to set time aside to sit, listen and hear what God is saying. While my time isn’t perfect, it’s my time. Time God is using to teach and direct me. It’s time for discovery and surprises.
This week I invite you to join me. Seven days is all I ask. Seven days at dawn where we meet God and surrender our time to him. It doesn’t have to be perfect time. It doesn’t have to be planned. It just has to be.
Will you join me?