Is it really that important to have time with God in the morning? Sure you have heard all of these things talked about before from preacher types and the like, but is it really that neccessary? And if so, why? Well my friend, I would argue that it is and this is why: Jesus was an early riser, in a short but telling sentence in the first chapter of Mark's Gospel we read,
"Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed." (Mark 1:35)
And while I admit we cannot surmise that this was necessarily Jesus's practice all the time, it was at least his practice some of the time, and it was regarded by the evangelist Mark to be significant enough to record in his gospel (with the providential oversight of the Holy Spirit I might add), indicating to us some pattern or practice of his Lord that he wanted others to know about and imitate.
And if you have ever experienced this personally, you are familiar with the benefits and refreshment that it brings, things such as:
And spending our waking hours with God, we show the priority of this relationship over all else in life
Since our waking thoughts determine the tone and course of our day, morning time with God sets on minds and hearts on what is most important from the very beginning
Early in the morning is one of the quietest times of the day, affording us the chance to concentrate in think without interruption from life's demands and pressures (especially those of a young family)
We are rested from our nights sleep (hopefully) and our minds and emotions have had time to recover from the strains of the previous day
We are able to clear our consciences of the guilt of sin before we begin our day
We're able to cast our burdens upon the Lord before the day begins (Mat 11:28; Lk 11:3; 1 Pet 5:7)
Were able to draw upon God's power to strengthen us for what lies ahead (Ps 5:1-3)
But if were honest with ourselves we know there can be many hurdles for us to get up early especially on a consistent basis (I can relate as I am not naturally an "early riser", but instead a "night owl"):
"But if we are honest with ourselves we know there can be many hurdles for us to get up early in the morning."
Not going to bed at a decent hour because of our lack of discipline and self-control. For many of us if we're honest our going to bed late is not a sign of being a hard worker but wasting time and energy in our "winding down" time that we spend watching TV and other various unproductive things.
Not waking up at the same time everyday
Not relying on ourselves to wake up and get out of bed, but instead relying on a spouse, roommate, or parent (getting out of bed immediately and on time everyday could generally be one of the single disciplines that has the greatest impact on your life and relationship with God) Prov 6:6-11; 26:14
Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest. How long will you lie there, you sluggard? When will you get up from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest—and poverty will come on you like a thief and scarcity like an armed man. Proverbs 6:6-11
May these helpful practices and common pitfalls help you as you strive to have time with God that is not dutiful, but instead is full of meaning, connection, inspiration, guidance, correction, and hope!