In the morning, O LORD, you hear my voice;
in the morning I lay my requests before you
and wait in expectation.
David spent his mornings with the Lord. He would rise up early in the morning, often before daylight (probably always before daylight), petition the throne of God with his requests, always in an attitude of worship, and wait in expectation for what God would say. And then, once he had heard from the Lord, he would go on about his day.
When I became a Christian, I was always told that mornings were the times to pray. I was told that I was to give God the first part of my day, which was the best part, untouched by the world. And I did that. For a season. But as I’ve gotten married, had children and taken up responsibilities of working full-time as well as ministry, mornings don’t seem like the best time for me. I try to make it a point to pray continuously throughout the day, as the Scriptures instruct, and sometimes I find myself praying at night, and telling God about my day. Yet, when I do this, I often feel guilty that I did not give God that first part of my day and that I lived my day without inviting Him into it.
I realize I have had a somewhat religious spirit when it comes to “when” and “where” to pray. I know many young moms who have beautiful and amazing times with the Lord during all hours of the day, in their car, in their prayer closets, sitting in the middle of their floor with a towel over their heads while their children run around, in the bathroom (and all of us with multiple children can say “Amen” to that). It just doesn’t feel right when I don’t pray in the morning. When I pray at night, I feel like God is more of a distant boyfriend who I didn’t see all day, who’s advice I did not seek for the day, and then I end up complaining to about my day when it’s all over. I would not call this intimacy as God intended it to be.
In my quest to draw closer to God, I have been thinking that it’s vitally important to my spiritual growth that I rearrange my priorities so that I can again give God the first part of my day. I want God to be glorified in all that I do; I don’t want Him to simply be an after thought or someone that I complain to about my day. But why is it so hard for me to rise up early before the kids do? Normally, I would get up at 6:30a to shower and then wake my kids at 7:00a. If I wanted to spend quality time with the Lord, getting up at 5:30a, or even 6:00a would be best. But I sleep through my alarm every time. Maybe it’s because I go to bed too late (I have to catch up with all of you, right?, or you know the laundry has to get done). When do I do all of the stuff that comes with keeping a home, mothering, and yes, even blogging if I don’t use my free hours in the evening to accomplish it. And then, when the alarm does go off, why don’t I get up? I should be excited to spend time with Jesus. But rather, I roll over telling myself I will do it tomorrow. I manage to blurt out a few requests here and there as I am getting ready, or in the car, but it’s not the same. I thank God I have a corporate Prayer Room I can go to during the day when I am at work, but still, it’s not the same.
I want intimacy. I desire for Him to come and share His heart with me. I long for those times when it’s just Him and me. But if my desire for Him is so strong, why is it so hard? God is tugging on my heart. He is calling me to come. I want to come. God, break down the barriers, the selfish parts of me that would turn an ear to your calling. I am here Lord. Please, keep calling me to come. I am coming Lord!
How about you? Do you struggle with when to have your quiet time with the Lord? What works for you?