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Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Breaking the Chains of Sleep

Throughout my life, the most rewarding and wonderful times in prayer have been when I have gotten up EARLY in the morning to meet Him. When I give Him the very first part of my day, I am able to accomplish much more than I ever thought possible. When I can make breakfast, get the laundry done, put supper in the crock pot, and have prayer time in before 9:00 is GOOD. Scripture speaks over and over about the benefits of rising early.
"She gets up while it is still dark; she provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls." Proverbs 31:15

"Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed." Mark 1:35
There are two women that I have been so encouraged by over the years. The first is author and speaker Becky Tirabassi. About 6 years ago, I read her book, Let Prayer Change Your Life. She is the one who initially got me into "the early hours" and also into journaling. Secondly, a woman named Laine who writes letters of encouragement to Christian women on the web. She has written so much about her early appointments with the Lord. She's an amazing woman of God and I come away smiling after every letter I read.

E.M. Bounds is one of my favorite voices on the topic of prayer. Even though he was born in 1835, the wisdom he relates is clearly still applicable. Here are some of his thoughts on prayer, excerpted from the book "E.M. Bounds on Prayer":

A desire for God that cannot break the chains of sleep is a weak thing and will do little good for God. The desire for God that stays far behind the Devil and the world at the beginning of the day will never catch up. It is not simply getting up that has brought men to the front and has made them leaders in God's hosts. It is the overwhelming desire that stirs and breaks all self-indulgent chains that does so. But getting up gives vent, increase, and strength to the desire. If they had lain in bed and indulged themselves, the desire would have been quenched. The desire aroused them and inspired them to reach out for God (p. 491).

More time and early hours devoted to prayer would revive and invigorate many a decayed spiritual life. More time and early house for prayer would manifest in holy living. A holy life would not be so rare or so difficult a thing if our devotions were not so short and hurried (p.518).
The first step to being able to get up early in the to stop staying up so late! So it's off to bed I go. May you greet Him early...


Blogger catina jane said...

i love this post , this what God had on my heart this morning.. and here i am
reading it. wow! he is so cool

11/09/2006 3:27 AM  
Anonymous Monique said...

Hello! My name is Monique, and I have been reading your posts for a couple of days. Old posts too. And I have come away with many questions. I won't burden you with them all, but I am very interested in trying to do what I can for the environment, and you have inspired me and shown me areas I had not even considered before!

So, probably my main questions I have for you as I go about my morning routine are...

1.Garbage you use NO garbage bags? What about for trash day? How do you take your garbage to the curb?

2.When you wash windows, how do you do it? I am sorry this sounds flighty, but I was washing my bathroom mirror, thinking about how I could get by without paper towels, and I just wonder what you wipe the glass with? Because a wash cloth would leave pieces of itself behind on the mirror. So, what kind of cloth do you use for this chore?

11/09/2006 4:49 AM  
Anonymous Monique said...

Now I feel silly! I just saw your post from a couple of days ago where you talk about carrying your garbage bag down flights of stairs...duh! Sorry! But my other question still stands....and maybe sometime, you might create a post about what you clean with? Do you use regular laundry detergent? I will apologize now if you have already posted on this before! (0: Monique (again)

11/09/2006 4:54 AM  
Anonymous Jana said...

I really enjoyed that quote about breaking the chains of sleep. I am not one to advertise myself, but this post is about my last blog post and I thought it might benefit some of your readers. I have done a sort of "how-to" for getting up early - it's something I struggled with for years, in spite of a strong desire to do so. If this comment bugs you, as it's an outright "commercial", feel free to delete it - no offense. My blog can be found here:

11/09/2006 5:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah yes, sleep. Some are addicted to caffeine, others to sugar-- for me, it's too much sleep! God has slowly been breaking this in me. I was reading back through old journals lately and found reference to this problem in many of my prayers, believe it or not! I love it when I get up early to spend time with Him, but I seem to love sleeping more. Thank you for sharing that quote-- I might just copy some of it and post it somewhere!

11/09/2006 6:02 AM  
Blogger Andrea said...

I love Laine's letters!
She is so encouraging--especially about rising early to meet with the Lord.
Nice thoughts.

11/09/2006 6:08 AM  
Blogger Sara said...

Jana...don't be silly! Thank you so much for commenting! I went to your blog and it's a GREAT post...I'm so glad you shared it. I'm excited to read more!

11/09/2006 6:34 AM  
Blogger km said...

Oh, my dear friend, Sara! This is why we are soul mates. You constantly encourage me and motivate me in my walk with the Lord by your honesty. I am so looking forward to our talks this weekend and just to be around my bestest friend!

11/09/2006 6:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Always enjoy reading and keeping up with your blog...I tell my hubby that it's so fun to find a new kindred spirit. Sleep has always been my "drug" of choice and have found it the ultimate denial of myself. I yearn to get up day starts with the right perspective instead of feeling like I am playing catch-up all day. My kids get big smiles, hugs and routine when I get up before them instead of videos, my grumpiness, and silence. Thank you for reminding me of this and I am ready by His strength to meet him early along with my trusty friend Cup of Joe!! :)

11/09/2006 6:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OOpS! Sleep isn't the ultimate denial of my it up is!! :) :)

11/09/2006 7:00 AM  
Anonymous Anna said...

Thanks for the inspiration. I just need to get to bed earlier. I do like the quiet hours of the morning.

11/09/2006 7:31 AM  
Blogger Samantha said...

I'm a complete sleepaholic and have been struggling with knowing with it specifically since Greg and I got married. I need to start getting up before the rest of the fam to start our day off right and more importantly, to start my day off right with the Lord. Thanks for the reminder, encouragement and challenge!

11/09/2006 11:15 AM  

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