Monday, October 5, 2015

Psalm 139:2-3 - The 31 Day Challenge

You know when I sit and when I rise; you are familiar with all my ways.
You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.
                    Psalm 139:2-3

Each morning I have my quiet time with God.  I intentionally do this first each day.  That way, no matter what else happens, the rest of the day, at least I got that done.  When I don’t do it first, it is all too easy not to do it at all.  Plus, it sets a tone for the rest of my day.  It gives me perspective and perhaps a little more grace, a little more kindness and joy for the rest of the day.

Taken early one morning out my back door
I read my daily Bible passage.  I pray.  I journal.  I write my blog.  I work on various Bible studies.  What I do during this time is not the same every day.  Some days it is long; some days it is shorter.

My goal every day is to finish all this before anyone else is up.  My day goes better if I do that.  It is tricky sometimes because my kids have always been early risers.  They are both usually up by 6:30.  For them to sleep past 7 (even when they don’t have to be up) is rare.  That means I have to be pretty intentional about getting up before them; it is not going to happen automatically.  On school days, I just set the alarm and get up, but there’s just something about getting up to an alarm on a Saturday or a summer day.  I just don’t want to do that!  Even when I tried to guess what time to set an alarm, I could never guess right.  I would either be up WAY too early, or they would get up just minutes after I started moving.

This is what I do instead.  As I’m going to sleep, I ask God to wake me up the next day.  It’s an idea I first got from Ginger Harland a while back.  It sounds something like this:  “Dear God, would you please wake me up in the morning before everyone else is awake so we can hang out and spend some time together?”  Yes, those are usually the words I say.  I ask God if I can hang out with Him.  And you know what?  God likes hanging out with me too.  I think this type of request is honoring and pleasing to God.  When I remember to ask God to wake me up in order to hang out, He has NEVER failed to wake me.  Never.  Why?  Because He is faithful.  When I forget to ask Him, he doesn’t wake me.  It is that simple step of me asking that shows how when we draw near to God, He draws near to us.  He is already there, but He wants us to seek Him, to show that the relationship is important to us, too.

God’s timing always amazes and amuses me.  It is not the exact time each day, but it is consistently 30-45 minutes before everyone else is up.  As I’m finishing up my quiet time, I find myself thinking, “The house is so quiet.  I could read or crochet or go back to sleep…”   And then I hear doors open and feet coming down the hallway.  It makes me smile every time.  It’s as if God is telling me that He didn’t wake me up so I could spend time by myself.  

He knows when I rise and wakes me up accordingly.  He doesn't just know when I rise; He knows when my children rise too.  He is the perfect alarm clock because He never wakes me up too early or too late.  His timing is perfect.  Every time.  He is not slow in keeping His promises.

One night recently, I was extremely tired.  I hadn't slept well in a week or more, and I just couldn't do anymore.  I went to bed shortly after the kids, which was pretty early for me.  Without even realizing what I was really doing, I asked God to bless my sleep that night.  Instead of asking Him to wake me up, I asked Him to help me sleep.  I don't remember ever asking that before but bless my sleep He did!  I slept soundly from about 10 that night until 9 the next morning!  I slept for 11 hours straight.  

God knew.  He knows my rising and my lying down.  I desperately needed a good night' sleep, and He delivered.  Just another way that He knows me full well and provides all my needs.

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