Call It Grace (or why I get up at an ungodly hour)

My house is in the gray, smudgy, morning hours right now. A cup of coffee steams. The birds aren't yet drowned out by traffic and rap music (not mine, the neighbor's). My ceiling fans whir, and my mind has time to process.

These hours, these morning times, have become so precious.

In an hour, probably less, the noise will start, the crumbs will fall, and someone will find a way to pry the lid off of a spill-proof sippy cup.

But for now... silence.

In my house, silence isn't golden. It's gray and cool and smooth. And I can breath.

This calm has become increasingly important over these past several months. I've always been busy. Each phase of life has its busyness. There's a form of busyness from the time you could tell what a clock was saying. Junior high, high school, college, professional life... It shifts, it morphs, it looks different. But it's all busy.

Lately my busy has looked a little frantic. And full of stinky diapers. And I've learned that without this still calm, the quiet, my Bible cracked open and my coffee fresh and hot, I'm not a very good mom.

Call it grace.

How often do I remember the exact truth I found and clung to this morning? Not often. Sometimes it's hard to remember the rhythmic beauty of the psalms when both children are convinced that they are dying from the lack of a snack (or toys, or shoes, or car keys, or insert random objects that my children become immediately, violently attached to).

Call it grace.

The days when I pause, when I look up before I look around, those days are better. My speech is sweeter, my temper more even, my to-do list less of a dictator, my children more of a joy.

Call it grace.

God doesn't require that I remember a deep theological truth. He doesn't demand perfect memory of this morning's text. I'm not required to grasp the subtle nuances of Hebrew and Greek while my arms are covered in dish water and a toddler is attached to my leg.

It's grace.

I'm not a morning person. Anytime before 8 a.m. is an "ungodly hour" (and nowadays, my mornings start at 5:30!) But when I turn to God, when I make that "ungodly hour" all about finding my Savior, breaking my heart, waiting for the day with brokenness and deep neediness... He fills me up. And I've found the glory in early mornings.

Such grace.

So, set your alarms, buy a coffee pot with a timed brew, invest in a new journal... and come spend some time at the foot of a God who has new mercies every morning. And He extends them even to those of us who aren't morning people. Trust me. I should know.