Beating the Sunrise!

            By Victoria Duerstock

            The clock reads 2:36 p.m. and I’m finally sitting down to write a blog post that my planner said was scheduled for 9:00 a.m. Where does the time go? 

I wish I knew.

I suspect it’s with those missing socks that never find their mates.

            As a creative, I find it difficult to always block off the necessary time to accomplish the many tasks I juggle. Between being a wife, a mom, a homeschool educator, author, business owner, and more, I often lean heavily on my “plan.” Often, I’m guilty of working through my writing time because I have a tendency to put off my creative projects in favor of accomplish the task/goal projects that can be easily checked off my growing lists.

            But God grabbed my attention a few years ago regarding the fact that I wasn’t walking out my talk and reminded me that my time was a resource a lot like money. You’ve probably heard it said that you can find out what someone most values by opening their checkbook – well the same is true with how we manage our time.

Psalm 119:111 Your testimonies are my heritage forever, for they are the joy of my heart.

I realized that I hadn’t been giving Him the best of my time in prayer and daily Bible reading. Inconsistent at best, and non-existent at worst, the struggle to make time for this important part of my life was hard. Every season I thought – it will get easier. But guess what my friends, it doesn’t.

            My children are no longer small and yet I still have to be very intentional to spend time daily with God. In order to lessen this issue, I made a radical change in my behavior and life to settle this battle once and for all.

            Two years I started getting up at 5am.

                        I am not a morning person.

                                    I need 10 hours of sleep to be a kind and generous human.

            No I am not perfect. And yes, there are times when a measure of grace is needed in my routine, but my habit is established even if it will never be easy.

            Early mornings are vital to my schedule because without it I am not an obedient follower of Jesus. I had to learn that sacrifice was a part of this process in my life. It is most definitely a discipline – a beating down of the body into submission – like Paul reminds us.

            I generally get about two hours on my own before the rest of the house stirs. Sometimes less but generally I get a good chunk of time. I look at the stars and then watch the sunrise. I drink a cup of coffee. Ok, ok – more than one. I dwell on how great my God is, and I pray through the various thoughts/fears/requests that invade my quiet space. I read my Scripture for the day and sometimes read from a book on prayer. I pray some more, and sometimes I sing and journal.

            Five a.m. now holds an incredibly special place for me. It’s my “me time” that I searched for for so long as an adult! Funny though because it’s all about Him and less about me – and it’s what I needed all along.

            Want to do this in your life too? You absolutely can – here’s my top 3 suggestions for making a radical change in pursuit of Christ.

1.     Prepare the night before.

·       Get the coffee maker ready.

·       Clear the chair/sofa you will sit to meet with God.

·       Grab a pen, journal, Bible and put right by that spot.

·       Grab a blanket in case you are cold

2.     Set the alarm, and don’t hit snooze.

3.     Ask God to help you stick to your commitment.

Honestly, if left to my own devices, I’m going to stay in my comfortable bed until I’m forced up. But when I got serious about my desire to pursue this time faithfully, I watched God bless my efforts by providing the strength and ability to “just do it.” Sometimes that strength was in the form of a bird pecking the window or an alarm going off, but either way – He provided and still does today. I urge you to walk out your faith by committing to be faithfully obedient in your quiet time each day! 

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