Early morning is my favorite time of day. The air is cold and still. The sun is just starting to show itself. The rest of the world seems to still be asleep and I have a little corner of creation all to myself. The worries of the day have yet to intrude. The possibilities of the day are yet to be discovered. My mind is alive. My spirit is calm. It’s the perfect time to spend a few quiet moments with God.
I have never been one to need an alarm clock. My eyes usually begin to open themselves between 5:00 and 5:30 in the morning. I give my sleeping wife a quick kiss on the cheek, step into my comfy slippers and pad out into the living room. I make a quick detour through the kitchen to start the coffee, then circle back to the table we’ve designated as our prayer space.
I began my quiet time with God only recently. Three weeks ago to be exact. It was an exercise that came out of the faith sharing group my wife and I host once a week. It was supposed to last one week and be replaced by another exercise or action the following week. Somehow, through no extraordinary effort to make it so, it has become habit. I have no set routine to my quiet time. I might pray, sit and meditate, engage in some spiritual reading, or a combination of all three activities. It’s time I get to spend with God reflecting on the day before and the day to come, and to ask for His guidance. I have never needed it more than right now.
Two weeks ago, after long discussions with my wife, I made the decision to quit my job. The job that paid our bills. The job that brought us out to Virginia less than a year ago to start a new life. The job that was draining the life out of me, causing me to lose sleep, and keeping me from being able to enjoy all the wonderful social and spiritual opportunities in our new home and parish. I think it is no coincidence that the opportunity to quit presented itself after little more than a week after I started spending my mornings with God. Nothing all that unusual happened at work the day I decided to quit, but for the first time it dawned on me that staying in that job was causing more harm than good.
Did God open my eyes to previously unseen possibilities? Did my daily prayers for guidance and protection give me the confidence to take the step I had always believed to be impossible? One thing is certain: God was with us when my wife and I discussed our options and He was with us when the decision was made. I believe God does in fact intercede in our lives in many ways and we are much more likely to be aware of his presence if we have lovingly invited him. I look forward to many more mornings with God and welcome his presence throughout each subsequent day.