For about a month and a half now, I've been a member of the 6:30 AM club. The club is an interesting one. I first heard about it in a book called Shopping for Time by the bloggers of "GirlTalk" (see link in my list). It requires me to get out of bed every morning at 6:30 AM, even if I have nowhere to be until 6:30 PM. I would definitely consider myself an "anti-morning person." So why in the world would I join such a club?
After my daughter was born in May, I found it more and more difficult to spend time with the Lord. Sure I went to church on Sundays and usually Wednesdays as well. But my heart was empty on a regular basis. I couldn't understand why I felt cold towards God and why He wasn't listening to my prayers. Of course, my prayers were simply any short "pop" prayers that came to mind during the day. In my single-hood, I was pretty good at setting aside thirty minutes to an hour of time each day, even with a very busy schedule. What happened? Motherhood. ;)
In the beginning, Hannah slept seemingly all the time. But during that time, I was so exhausted from delivery, I was playing catchup myself. After the first couple of weeks ended, there was rarely even a thirty minute spell in which Hannah was not crying. Only later did we find out she has allergies to both dairy and soy (hence her crying spells). Day after day would go by in which I used all of my energies to try and deal with my daughter. I was sleep deprived like any new mother but more importantly, I was Christ deprived. I was not getting the spiritual food that I needed to make it through each day. I became desperate. Even desperate enough to join the 6:30 AM Club.
What exactly does this club do? Well, as I said earlier, it requires me to get up at 6:30 AM every morning. Let me humbly say that there are still some days in which I miss the meeting. After getting up and painstakingly trying to adjust my swollen eyes, I start my coffee pot. Then I sit down, in the wonderful silence of my home with my Bible and journal. I sit at the kitchen table so I'm not tempted to doze back off by sitting in a comfortable living room chair. After reading two chapters of Scripture (one Old Testament, one New), I meditate and journal my prayers to the Lord. Journaling helps my mind to not go off on tangents as easily. Some mornings I also work on my Scripture memory. Afterwards, I'm so refreshed and renewed by God's grace. By being a part of this "club," I am setting aside a consistent and quiet time to be with the Lord each day. I've learned that if I try to do it later in the day, I am too easily distracted by other things - not to mention tending to my precious daughter's daily needs.
Does one have to have their "quiet" time in the morning? Not necessarily. However, as much of an "anti-morning person" as I am, I'm becoming more and more convinced that it is the best time to set aside. By setting your eyes on Christ first thing in the morning, the tone of your entire day has been set. You will not be as easily distracted by the busyness of the day and it's activities. And you will not be so tired at the end of the day to be able to focus. There are verses in the Bible that remind us to pray at all times of the day (such as Ps. 55:17, 92:2; 1 Chron 23:30 and others). Yet there are probably many more verses that remind us of the importance of seeking the Lord in the morning. Just to name a few, 1 Sam 1:19, 2 Chr. 20:20, Job 1:5, and Ps 5:3, 88:13. Most importantly Jesus Christ modeled this discipline (Mk 1:35).
Are you ready to join the 6:30 AM Club? Or maybe for you, it will need to be 5 or 5:30 AM? Depending on your needs and schedule, your club may be a little different. Do you need extra motivation to get out of bed? Ask someone to call you. If you're wanting to join the 6:30 AM Club, I can call you myself.
Here is the "super-secret-six point strategy" the book, Shopping for Time gives the hopeful club member:
- Place your alarm clock in a strategic location, preferably on the other side of the room from your bed (so you have to get up!).
- Set your alarm for the same time every day.
- Never, never, never hit the snooze button or lie back down to catch a few more winks. The second your alarm goes off is the most critical moment in getting up early.
- Proceed directly to the coffee pot or caffeinated drink of choice. ;)
- Be prepared to feel absolutely miserable for about ten to fifteen minutes. But the misery soon turns into pure gladness as you experience the delight of meeting with God and reap the benefits the rest of the day. Fifteen minutes of misery is certainly work fifteen-plus hours of peace and productivity.
- Remember that our bodies eventually respond to a standard wake-up time. In other words, it gets easier.
I'd love to hear your comments or other helpful tips!