Morning Motivation

Then, in the early morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a deserted place, and there He prayed. ~ Mark 1:35 What motivates me? What moves me to get up out of my bed each and every morning to greet the day? I was thinking about this earlier, sipping my coffee in the little basement room where I spend my quiet times. I wish I could always say it was something wonderfully inspiring and spiritual. However, truth be told, there’s usually several Basic Motivating Factors at work here most days - A). I NEED to use the bathroom; B). the dog needs to be fed and let outside; C). I've got to get my daughter to school before 7:30 AM (obviously, Factor C is a moot point on weekends, holidays and throughout the summer).

While I'm definitely more of a morning person than a night owl, I’m certainly NOT one of those perky people who jump out of bed with a smile on their faces and a song on their lips, dancing towards the coffeemaker. Most days, I’m thankful that I make it down the stairs in the semi-dark without tripping or getting knocked over by my oversized, ravenously hungry dog. And let me assure you -- with major bedhead, morning breath and a face sans all traces of makeup, I certainly don't make for much of an attractive package. I'm glad no one in my household is awake when I first get up (except for the dog, that is). It’s a wonder that ANYONE would want to spend some time with me that early and especially with me looking like an extra from 'Dawn of the Dead,' but amazingly enough, Someone does. Jesus does. He's been waiting for me. And that should be the Number One Priority reason that motivates me to bound out of bed early each morning. Thankfully, the Lord God is more concerned with what I look like on the inside than the outside. He looks past my scarecrow hair, dragon breath and splotchy face to my heart....my sinful/joyful/anxious/burdened heart. He wants me to come to Him with all my expectations, my ideas, my concerns, fears, sorrows, questions. And...not only does He want me to sit and talk to Him......He wants to talk to ME!

Think of it: The Master, the King desires to have a conversation with each of us, whether it be over a steaming mug of hot coffee, tea or an ice cold glass of orange juice. He's been up all night, watching over each one of us as we sleep (Psalm 121:3 states that “He Who watches over you will not slumber....”) like a parent might watch over a much loved child in the night, just amazed to see their little chest rise and fall with each breath. He is delighted when we wake up, waiting with anticipation for us to come and spend some time with Him; and sorely disappointed when we don’t. Yes, He knows how busy we can get with our lives, but conversation and time spent in the company of our Savior shouldn't occur:

*Only when there’s a crisis in our lives or we desperately need or want something from Him *Only on Saturday evenings/Sunday mornings *Only at Wednesday night prayer meetings and weekend retreats

Jesus doesn’t want a hastily scribbled note from us dropped in some Holy Suggestion Box: ‘Would like less trials and difficulties this year. Thanks!’ He doesn’t want a neatly typed service request handed to Him from us: ‘My child’s heart needs changing ASAP.’ Nor does He want us to send Him a Western Union Telegram: ‘FINANCES DWINDLING. SEND MORE MONEY NOW!!’

No, He longs to have some slow, sweet, intimate 'face time' with us. We were created for that. I believe Jesus loves it when we set aside a special place and time, just for Him, when we come to Him with our Bibles in hand, ready to sit at His feet. Not to talk AT Him, but to converse WITH Him. And most importantly, to LISTEN to what our precious LORD has to say to us. He desires to go over our agendas with us to show us what HE has planned for us. He wants to forgive us of our sins, cry with us in our grief, laugh with us over our “I Love Lucy” life moments, rejoice with us in our victories, comfort us in our pain, listen to our doubts and questions, encourage us in our hopelessness, hold us when we’re afraid, bless us with more than we could ever imagine and carry us through our darkest valley experiences. And so much more. It’s time well spent. And all before we dash out the door in the morning. We just have no idea.

My dear friends, don’t accept the malarky the world loves to dish out, pushing us to be perpetually productive the moment our feet hit the cold, hard floor, and having us believe that resting and just BEING is synonymous with laziness. It’s not. Please accept this as some food for thought and perhaps as some much needed encouragement, comfort and a renewed motivation to spend some time talking with and listening to our amazing Jesus.

Can you hear Him? He’s calling to you. Are you ready to come and meet with Him, to sit at His feet? He's waiting for you......

In the morning when I rise, Help me to prioritize All the thoughts that fill my day; Before my schedule tells me that my day is full, Before I'm off and on my way I want to praise You I need to praise You; Let the first song that I sing Be praises to my God and King ~ First Song That I Sing, by Sara Groves

Pam Manners. First and foremost, I'm a follower of Jesus Christ, a daughter of the King. I'm a wife and mother of two teens, ages 15 and 18. I just recently retired as a secretary in State government after almost 29 years of service and I'm enjoying the freedom! I love to write, read, listen to music, bake, walk along the beach or through the woods, always with my trusty camera, and I'll take lively and deep conversations with my gal pals and a good cup of coffee over housecleaning anytime. http://pam-intheshadowofhiswings.blogspot.com