By Amy Hafner
“I spend my time with God at 4:30am,” a wise pastor once said to me. “Well, morning aren’t my thing,” I replied. I went home thinking, “I want to give God my best and my best is in the evening.” When I did study his word, or pray, or worship Him evening would be my time.
About a year later I felt empty in my relationship with God. I wasn’t absorbing His Word, sure I was reading, but His Word wasn’t speaking to me, His Word wasn’t changing my heart. To be completely honest, time with Him was boring and I was doing it to check it off the list.
One morning, while getting ready for my day, I prayed, “Father I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, I want to know you better, I just don’t know how.” A few weeks later, in November, I went to a conference with my husband. The theme that kept popping up for me was, if you really want to know who God is you need to know God’s word.
There was a woman speaker at the conference and she had something about her I wanted. She could quote more scripture than anyone I had ever met. She had so much confidence, so much joy, and so much energy and I wanted it too.
I attended her breakout session and she hammered home reading the Bible and reading it in the morning. She talked about the One Year Bible Plan. I felt God convicting me. Committing to this was something I needed to do and I needed to do it in the morning.
Remember, I don’t like mornings, I didn’t want to wake up earlier. Mornings are “ugly” for me. I needed to go back to scripture and argue this concept (in my head, I’m a pain) before surrendering.
“I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me.” Proverbs 8:17
“My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up.” Psalm 5:3
David consistently cries out to God in the morning, and in Mark 1:35 Jesus goes to pray while it is still dark although he prays in the evening as well.
Fighting my flesh confession…I mean conclusion: There is no “commandment” to pray in the morning, but God always asks for our first fruits. My study notes said, “In Hebrew, resit [tyivaer]; this concept of first fruits derives from God’s creation work. Because God created everything that exists, all of creation belongs to Him (Psalm 24:1 ). Consequently, that which is first and best belongs to him and is to be given to him.”
I almost got myself out of it; my best was definitely not morning. Then something hit me… God’s unconditional love for us. He doesn’t care what we look like in the morning, if we have messy hair, bad breath or are grumpy.
No matter what side of the bed I roll out on, if He is on my side my day is so much better. Before the world has a chance to distract and divert me, He fills my morning with grace, forgiveness, mercy, kindness, wisdom and love.