For most of my life mornings were an annoying inconvenience. The men in my family went to bed late and slept in as late as possible. My father, the worst offender of this habit, would wake for work and sing in his terrible off-key voice, “It’s a beautiful day for a morning…” Then he would throw a wet face clothe at each of his sons and smile. It was a mad rush to get ready and off to school. All I could remember thinking was, “I wish I had more time to sleep.” The most glorious mornings were ones I slept in till 11 am. The bliss!
Since I adapted to this rather strange lifestyle of working three jobs, getting to the bus a 6:30 am and working till I boarded the 6:30 pm bus for home, I have come to appreciate, even treasure, my mornings. Sundays in particular, when I work from 9 am to 9 pm, the mornings have come to be a most reflective and important time. I am convinced my preaching has improved because of the time I spend on Sunday morning walking my dog and breathing in the Spirit and out the words to my sermon later that day.
Some of my friends have a disciplined morning ritual or regime. Some begin their day with meditation, some with devotions or scripture reading and prayer, some with a brisk run, some put their thoughts into a diary. For me being the first to rise, open the curtains, drink the left over coffee from the day before, and look out the window as the darkness slowly become light is a most important experience. I think once again I am allowing the Creator’s landscape and cycles (night to day, day to night) and seasons move my body and spirit into a new adventure. I feel ready to engage the day because I am being propelled into the experience with reminders of expectation.
That is the word, expectation. There is an expectation that something is going to happen and I anticipate it with great joy. It may turn out to be a sad time, a painful time, but I do not know, all I know is something is going to happen and I want to be there. The joy comes knowing there is life to be lived and I am blessed to be part of it.
In a few minutes I will put the wash on, make myself some fresh coffee, put on shorts for the last time this year and walk my dog around the sleepy neighbourhood. As we walk I will be open to everything around me, waiting for signs of a new day and new understandings of the world around me. I am average in intelligence and a little less than average in ability. But I have above average energy and memory so I am able to meet the challenges with excitement and hold what I learn in my mind for further consideration. There is a family wedding today. There is a sermon to memorize. There are people in the church who are hurting for various reasons to be called, emailed and prayed for. Each moment, each hour, each day, a new beginning.
As that old spiritual says,
My Lord, what a morning / My Lord what a morning / My Lord, what a morning / When the stars begin to fall
You’ll hear the trumpet sound / To wake the nations underground / Looking to my God’s right hand / When the stars begin to fall
You’ll hear the sinner moan / To wake the nations underground / Looking to my God’s right hand / When the stars begin to fall
You’ll hear the Christian shout / To wake the nations underground / Looking to my God’s right hand / When the stars begin to fall