by John UpChurch, Senior Editor, BibleStudyTools.com
Awake, my glory! Awake, O harp and lyre! I will awake the dawn! (Ps. 57:8).
Somewhere along the line, I forgot that I hate mornings. As a kid, I loathed the early morning sunshine after staying up too long and gorging on late-night TV shows. My Saturdays and Sundays and summer stirrings usually began at 1:00—p.m., that is. Even in college, I picked classes that didn’t require any matinal commitments on my part. If I could squeeze everything in from noon to four, all the better (which is part of the reason my university experience meandered through six years and countless majors).
But now, suddenly, I’m up at 5:00 a.m. And even worse? I like it.
I suppose there’s something about aging that rewires the morning-hate genes in our bodies or weakens the dawn antibodies we’ve built up over our childhood. The condition obviously overtook my grandfather, who never met a four o’clock coffee he didn’t like, and my father, who used to spring out of bed before I even went to sleep on summer nights. Genetic baggage like that will catch up with you.
So, here I am, awake to pray and scare the twitchy deer from our stubbly bean plants, awake to shush the early morning sleep whimpers from our dog, awake to roll life decisions through my recharged synapses before all the buzzes, whoops, and emails clog them up. Awake and alive.
David said that he would “wake the dawn” with his praises and prayers. Another psalmist, much later, cried for help in those dark, early morning hours. Suddenly being one of those early risers, now I understand why morning sun meant so much to them.
You see, for all my loathing earlier in life, there’s something almost sacred about the first light. No, I don’t mean God blesses one part of the day more than others; I mean that early mornings peel away distraction with rose-colored light. Early mornings smother doubts and fears in the same way they splatter dew on the grass. Those moments, before anything else bangs on the door of your brain, bring a clarity that fades away far too quickly. And I don’t want to miss it.
That’s why the boy who shuddered at the thought of eyes being open before noon is now the man who doesn’t want to miss the pre-day lightshow. It’s there that I find God waiting.
Intersecting Faith & Life: Mornings aren’t for everyone. So, this isn’t a devotional meant to guilt you into dragging your half-dead body out of bed before 6:00. Not everyone has had the night-owl genes swallowed by the morning ones, and it doesn’t make sense to wake up that early only to pass out during prayer.
Really, the time of day doesn’t matter; the focus does. I love those moments because their God’s. I wanted to give something up, to put aside the comfort of a warm bed for the better things: reading and thanking.
For me, mornings make the most sense. For you, maybe it’s a lunch break or an evening time when you might normally be watching Netflix. Whenever the time, you’ll be amazed how fulfilling it is to lay it aside for God… and how He changes you.