As I've mentioned previously, I'm participating in the Maximize Your Mornings challenge (#HelloMornings). The first week was difficult; this second week has been much better. My alarm goes off at 5AM but I snooze it until 5:30 before dragging myself out of bed and take 30 minutes before my day starts to spend some quiet time reading my Bible and in prayer/praise. I'm absolutely LOVING it. That feeling of prayer & praise stays with me through my commute into work and into my work day. What a blessing it's been having it with me all day long!
Yesterday Andy woke up extra early and I didn't get my quiet time in. I was honestly surprised at how much that little bit of quiet time threw my entire morning off kilter. This morning when my alarm went off at 5AM, I turned it off and turned on the weekend 630AM alarm. I figure since I don't normally get up on Saturday until I wake up naturally, getting up at 630 is early enough! :)
As part of this, I've started reading a chapter each of Psalm and Proverbs every morning. I've stumbled across so many words of wisdom and advice and confirmation that I'm finally allowing Him to lead my steps. I'm afraid my words my seem random or jumbled, but please bear with me. It's all about the things He's putting into my path as the confirmation I'm seeking.
Serve the Lord with reverent fear, and rejoice with trembling. Submit to God's royal son, or he will become angry, and you will be destroyed in the midst of all your activities - for his anger flares up in an instant. But what joy for all who take refuge in him!
Listen to my voice in the morning, Lord. Each morning I bring my requests to you and wait expectantly.
My bible notes for this verse says we should seek Him in the mornings when our minds are more free from problems and we can commit the whole day to the Lord. I liked that.
Fear of the Lord is the foundation of true knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.
My child, listen when your father corrects you. Don't neglect your mother's instruction. What you learn from them will crown you with grace and be a chain of honor around your neck. My child, if sinners entice you, turn your back on them!
I've always understood this passage from a parent's perspective. This past week when I was reading it, God showed it to me from a child's perspective. I don't listen when He corrects me. I cry out to Him over and over and over to break these strongholds, to take away the temptations, to set me free of these addictions. He hears my cries and tells me what to do, but do I listen? Nope. Well, maybe for a few days but then I tune Him out and do what I want, only to end up on my knees at the alter crying out to Him again. That is not how I need to be!
Come and listen to my counsel. I'll share my heart with you and make you wise. I called you so often, but you wouldn't come. I reached out to you, but you wouldn't pay attention. You ignored my advice and rejected the correction I offered. So I will laugh when you are in trouble! I will mock you when disaster overtakes you - when calamity overtakes you like a storm, when disaster engulfs you like a cyclone, and anguish and distress overwhelm you.
I don't want that to be me! I don't want Him to not listen to me, to not be there when I need to rely on His strength! I don't want to walk alone! But all who listen to me will live in peace, untroubled by fear of harm. (Proverbs 1:33)
So I will cry out for insight, and ask for understanding. I will search for them as I would for silver; seek them like hidden treasures. Then I will understand what it means to fear the Lord, and I will gain knowledge of God. (Proverbs 2:3-5) If I (we!) seek out God's wisdom, He will keep us from temptation!
Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.
My child, don't reject the Lord's discipline, and don't be upset when he corrects you. For the Lord corrects those he loves, just as a father corrects a child in whom he delights.
My child, listen to me and do as I say, and you will have a long, good life. I will teach you wisdom's ways and lead you in straight paths. When you walk, you won't be held back; when you run, you won't stumble. Take hold of my instructions; don't let them go. Guard them, for they are the key to life.
I cannot tell you how many times I have read those passages of scripture and missed the message!
Look straight ahead, and fix your eyes on what lies before you. Mark out a straight path for your feet; stay on the safe path. Don't get sidetracked; keep your feet from following evil.
I'm finding that as I make this
sacrifice effort of getting up early to spend time alone with Him, I'm not tempted to seek out fanfiction and I'm spending less time playing FV. It's easier now to do what needs to be done and turn FB off. Thank you Father!
During these past 2 weeks, I've also been reading The Mission of Motherhood. That's always been an area I struggle with. Not on being a mother in general, but how to be both the sole income provider and a Godly wife and mother. I'm currently in the middle of Chapter 3 (The Undivided Heart) and there's one passage where God really spoke into my heart and gave me clarity.
A divided mind that comes from a lack of wholehearted commitment to the home, as well as the simple time pressure that comes from supporting a dual career of home and family, tends to rob mother and children alike of the freedom they need to grow and thrive. (p.47)
I realized it's not that I can't "do it all" but rather I haven't been making motherhood a wholehearted priority in my life. My mind was set in a pattern of work and me-time, and my husband and children only got the leftovers. Oh my! I sure felt convicted when I received that bit of Godly wisdom!
A wise woman builds her home, but a foolish woman tears it down with her own hands.
The house of the wicked will be destroyed, but the tent of the godly will flourish.
Proverbs 14:1 and 14:11
Those two verses were from my reading this morning, and lent further confirmation that I'm starting to walk where He's leading me. It's not just His word though that is being used as confirmation. Songs, messages from my Pastor, from the Youth Pastor that spoke at the Rally last night... Everywhere I've turned this week, every day I've given up to and for Him to work in my life, He's spoken to me through other sources. I keep praying that I'll keep earnestly seeking His wisdom and correction.
We pour out our miseries
God just hears a melody
Beautiful the mess we are
The honest cries of breaking hearts
Are better than a Hallelujah
lyrics, Better Than a Hallelujah by Amy Grant