Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Psalms For Moms

Psalm 5:3, "In the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay
my requests before you and wait in expectation."

It used to be when I left a women's event I would always shrug and say that the only thing I got out of it was the same thing I got out of every women's event: that I should have a more consistent quiet time. That I should get up every morning and have time with God before I started my day. I got tired of hearing that same old message. I had small children who rose with the sun. How could I hope to get up before them when most nights one of them was getting me up during the night as well? I didn't need more guilt heaped on my sleep deprived head. The messages laid me low, made me feel like a failure. The times that I did attempt a morning quiet time, it was with half-heartedness-- a "should" and not a desire. I certainly didn't have that "when" factor that I talked about in a previous week.

So, what I am about to write is not for moms of small children. And by small I mean if you have a nursing baby who is getting you up and little children who always manage to get up before you, don't read anymore. You don't need more guilt and I believe that God has a special grace He extends towards you during this season of your life. Isaiah 40:11 says "He gently leads those that have young." So don't spend years as I did fretting over your lack of ability to have a morning quiet time in a quiet house before everyone gets up.

Trust me, that time will come. I know it doesn't seem like it, but it will. I am living proof. In the meantime, if you can find a few minutes when they're napping in the afternoon to spend with God doing a Bible study, reading a passage, journaling, and praying, it will go a long way towards helping you 1) form a habit and 2) have a better outlook. This is not a magic formula and it doesn't bring about instant results, but it is something that I recommend.

And now for the rest of you. I read this verse this morning in my quiet time and I wanted to share it with you all.

Isaiah 50:4, "He wakens me morning by morning, wakens my ear to listen like
one being taught."

Do you struggle with getting up to have a quiet time? Does the idea of getting up before your family trip you up because you'd much rather set an alarm for the last possible minute? Maybe you're not a morning person. Maybe you're up late at night. Maybe you've just never been able to establish this habit for one reason or another. And so I am going to include what my Bible study had to say this morning concerning this verse. I thought it was an interesting take and may be something you'd like to think about today:

Right now, ask the Father what time He wants you to set aside as time for Him alone. Write down what you sense Him saying.

Now, ask Him to wake you at that time. I find that I often wake up several minutes before my alarm clock is set to go off. Ask Him to awaken you with a sense of expectancy and to impart to you His own eagerness for time with you.

Quote from Live A Praying Life by Jennifer Kennedy Dean

I can testify that God has wakened me before my alarm went off. In fact it just happened this morning! I had to smile because once again, I know His word is true. If God wakes you in the morning, go with it. Keep your Bible by your bed so you can just reach for it, open it, and read. I get up and make tea and get back in my cozy warm bed. Sipping tea and studying God's word has become the way my body expects to start the day. I am not a morning person, but I find that I don't miss those few extra moments of sleep. Hearing from Him really is just as restorative! Try it and see if you don't agree.
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karen g. said...

Thanks Marybeth your words are so true and inspiring, i guess that might be because the are God inspired?!!!! I love my morning time alone with God my prayers and my thoughts. I used to fight to get up 15 min. before the 1st child alarm went off so I could hit the floor running to start breakfast. This summer, i decided that i was really missing out on precious prayer time so i set out to intentionally rise an hour before they would,summer hours made it easy. Once school began the wake-up time moved up dramatically and so did my wake-up time. I do wake up about an hour before they do very often without the alarm and i love it. Thank you for your heart and inspiration.
Blessings, karen g.

Allison Morrison said...

I'm a mom of little ones, but will be going back to my part-time nursing job (after 3 months of maternity leave) next week. I want God to wake me up about 15 minutes early so I can get in His Word before I go to work. Because I so don't want to go back :-) I need all of Him I can get before I go out in the morning! I leave by 6am so it's really early...

Zibilee said...

I am not a morning person, but lately I have been finding that I have been waking up a few minutes before the alarm, and wondering why. This post really made me consider that and I really think that I should be using that time to get a little prayer and reflection time in. I often pray and reflect before bed, but I am convinced that God wants and needs more time from me. Thanks for sharing this. It was very helpful to me.

revisedexpectations said...

This is a timely message for me! My youngest (11 months old) is quite an early riser and right now her wake time is erratic, making it hard to plan morning time alone. I know this is just for a season, so it's not terribly frustrating, but I still *need* to start my day in the word. So, nursing my baby first thing in the morning, I read my Bible and meditate and/or listen to a great sermon podcast. It's not my ideal retreat time, but it is inspiring and refreshing nevertheless! ~K

Wander said...

Very good advice!
I'm not the best morning person. I wake up feeling rotten. But, I like your thoughts on those nudged awake mornings.
I'm going to utilize those more for time with Him!

JillnCo. said...

Thank you for this post! My youngest is 16mo and still waking at night. But my husband is in the army and rises at 4am. I run out and start his deisel truck for him and make us coffee some mornings, more lately than usual. I used to just go back to bed but have found this to be the perfect time for quiet time. My 6 year old doesn't nap anymore and gets his one on one homeschooling while the other kids are sleeping. Thanks for the encouragement!