“But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matthew 6:6 (NIV)
Twelve years ago a coworker stated she hadn’t used an alarm clock for years but instead relied upon God to wake her up. I didn’t have enough faith at the time to try it out. A few years ago God reminded me of that conversation. I was working from home and waking up early to have my devotions and/or to work in the quiet of the morning. Since I usually slept through the alarm and my husband would have to gently shake me several times, he wasn’t sleeping soundly. I decided to talk to God and ask Him to wake me up instead. And guess what? He did!
One might question – was God really waking me up or had my body just readjusted to a new sleep/wake cycle? It’s no coincidence that on the nights I would ask God to wake me up early, He would. Yet, on the nights I chose not to ask, I slept through ‘til morning. Sometimes, though, when I was especially tired, I found myself almost resentful when He would wake me up. Sometimes I ignored His prompting, turning over and going back to sleep, or other times I would get up, but not be too happy about it.
However, one particular morning, God woke me up without my asking the night before. It was one of those experiences where you just know it’s Him. I got out of bed quietly, grabbed my devotional books, and got settled in our big brown chair, blanket securely wrapped around me for warmth. That particular morning God spoke directly about an issue I’d been struggling with, bringing me encouragement and hope. I crawled back into bed afterwards and slept peacefully until my husband gently shook me to start the day with everyone else.
It wasn’t until later that I realized what had really happened. God, who created Heaven and Earth, loves me so much that He gently whispered an invitation to join Him. All these mornings I’d been taking God for granted. When I really thought about it, I stopped thinking of those early mornings as inconveniences or something I “had” to do.
My whole perspective changed. When I realized Who was inviting me into a quiet relationship free from distractions every single day, I realized how special that was. He still lets me sleep in some days and we spend quiet time together after the household has settled down, but there is something extra special when He wakes me up early.
What He does for me, He’s willing to do for you. Have you ever thought about asking God to wake you up early for some one-on-one time together? It’s an experience I have come to really enjoy. You don’t have to be a morning person to enjoy a private moment with God before the rest of the household wakes up. Now when He extends a personal invitation, I’m much quicker to accept.
©2014 Cheri Swalwell