I like sleep. No, no, I love sleep. When I was pregnant with my first child, I would go to bed around 9 p.m. and sleep until around 7:30 a.m. That's ten and a half hours of sleep! Sometimes I'd get even more than that, because pregnancy makes me a tired mama.
Now, I like to go to bed around 10 p.m. (and it usually takes me a half hour to get to sleep, because that's just how I am! Lots of thoughts in my head, and a toddler in the bed with me can make falling asleep quickly a challenge). On days when my daughter has Kindergarten, I get up at 7 a.m., and on days when she doesn't... well, we usually roll out of bed anytime between 8 and 9 a.m. So I get anywhere from eight and a half to ten and a half hours of sleep a night.
Buuuuut -- as any co-sleeping, breastfeeding-on-demand mama will tell you (or any mama really, am I right?) it's not like I'm getting a solid sleep. I wake up needing to pee (thank you, small bladder and habitually drinking red bush tea in the evening), my son wakes me to breastfeed, I wake him by moving around too much...the list goes on.
What does all this have to do with the title of this post, about starting your day off with God? Well, despite my love of sleep, there's something I love even more: getting up earlier than my children, and sitting down and spending time in God's Word. Then, I spend time in prayer and silence, listening to what God has to say to my heart.
When I've fallen out of this habit, it can be hard to start it up again. Who really wants to get out of their nice, warm bed any earlier than they have to? Especially when, as moms, any bit of sleep we get is so precious.
I'm taking part right now in a "5 Day Stay at Home Mom Christian Bootcamp" on Facebook via a group started by an incredible lady named Molly Jean Shills. She's behind Faithfully Fit Momma, where she focuses on faith, family, food, fitness and fun. You can also find her at her website. We're looking at five specific topics to grow as Christian stay at home moms, but the one that we focused on yesterday is how important it is to spend time each day with Jesus.
Molly really inspired me to get back into the habit of starting my mornings with God. This lady is amazing -- she gets up regularly at 5:30 a.m. every day (something I can't even imagine!) to spend time with God and in His Word. She trusts Him to ensure that she is rested and ready for her day, even if it means getting up that early! She's very inspiring, and I encourage you to check out her ministry.
So this morning, when my alarm went off at 7 a.m., I did linger in the warmth of my blankets for awhile... but then I decided that today is the day I start putting God first again. So, I grabbed my Bible, snuck out of the room where my son was still snoozing, and made my way downstairs. I opened with a prayer, and then I read through a chapter of Philippians (the book I'm reading through now) and highlighted what I felt God was saying to my heart. Then I prayed about it, and asked Him to guide and protect my loved ones and me today. After that, I sat in peaceful silence and just basked in His love.
Sometimes, when I sit in silence, I can really feel God telling me something. Other times, I just feel a nice sense of peace, like I did today. Other times still I can feel distracted but I keep on refocusing my mind on Christ.
I encourage everyone to start their day off like this. Sure, you could do it in the evening, but I think starting your day off in the Word and in prayer can really ground you and keep you focused on Christ as you live out your day. After all, as I read in the Bible just this morning, we are to shine like stars in the sky and witness to the world (Philippians 2:15). To do this, we need to ground ourselves on the solid rock of Christ. And then, even if we're tired, even if we need multiple cups of coffee (or English breakfast tea, if you're like me!), we are ready to take on the day, and give it to Christ.
I'll take that over an extra half hour of sleep any day.