The Devotion Dilemma

“Yes, I’m awake. I’m not up, but I’m awake.”

These are the words I mumble, while lying horizontal, as my husband gets ready for work. He’s one of those cheery types in the morning. Instantly awake.

Needless to say, morning is not my best time of day.

My husband says I’m like an old television set where the dot of light begins in the middle of the screen and slowly widens to the outer edges. That’s how I wake up. Slowly.

Yes, my Romeo likens me to an old television set. Endearing, I know.

But I must say that I have always envied those morning types because everyone says that everyone else should have their “quiet time” in the morning. To make matters worse, there are plenty of Bible verses that depict Jesus rising early to pray. (Morning people especially love to quote these verses.)

Yet, I am, by nature, a night person, and sometimes I feel guilty about not rising before the sun to pray.

I do like to spend the first part of my day alone with Him. I just like the sound of 7:00 a.m. better than 5:00 a.m. That’s all.

So, if you’re like me, and you like the nighttime – when the rest of the world goes dark, and the darkness outside is like a veil to all other distractions, giving you greater focus – then give yourself permission to give that special time to Him, guilt-free.

One of my favorite verses is in Luke 9:32. Peter and two other disciples had fallen asleep. But when they woke up, and were fully awake, they saw Jesus and his transfiguration.

“Peter and his companions were very sleepy, but when they became fully awake, they saw [Jesus’] glory . . . and they heard a voice from heaven.”

Whether you are “fully awake” early in the morning or late at night, I pray that you will see Jesus, in the fullness of his glory, and hear the voice of the Father.

Are you a morning person or a night owl?

Today, I’m joining Lisa-Jo ~ taking five minutes to write about “awake.”

30 thoughts on “The Devotion Dilemma

  1. Thanks for this post, Denise…I’ve lived my entire life being a night owl, LOVING the anticipation of having time all to myself once everyone was asleep. Those are still some precious times for me 🙂 Over the years, the crazier life has gotten, I’ve found I can barely survive my day without having set the course of my day with His Word. I still love reading other author’s words about Him at night…I so look forward to that time of day! The morning, however, has become my sanctuary…the time I enter in before circumstances around me fight to take me out of His presence. It doesn’t always happen…especially when the book I was reading the night before was especially good and time got away from me, but when I do, I am always thankful. Spoken by a true night owl, dressed in a “morning person’s” clothing 🙂 Just trying something new these days but I love being reminded of how good His presence is at ALL times for the day!!!! Thank you again for your encouraging words, Denise!

    • Danice, I think we are of the same heart on this. I cherish my quiet time in the stillness of the late evening, when all is settled in for the day. But I have also found it beneficial to begin each day with some sort of “time alone” with God, just to give Him my day, and invite Him to orchestrate any and all “plans.”

  2. Ooh another night owl here! I love how you described it, too. From the time my children were small, and night was the first breath of silence I could find, I fell in love with the peace of the quiet dark. I agree what is important is that we fully wake to Him – no matter the time 🙂 Have a good week!

  3. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I’ve been feeling some “guilt” lately (without a better, brief way to explain it) about my lack of Morning Motivation. As you said, “everyone says everyone else should.” I’m usually ‘alone’ from 8 pm on…. Little Girl asleep, Hubby doing homework…. Why NOT use that time wisely? Only reason was the it wasn’t the “right” time. Thank you for helping the Spirit strip me of that excuse and of the pressures of the world. (P.S. I miss seeing you on Sunday mornings!)

    • Catharina, I hear ya’! I remember those nights when Jeff was writing papers for grad school, and I was tending to tiny tots. In that particular season of life, nighttime was oftentimes my only time of quiet. And I cherished it. (I miss seeing you on Sunday mornings too.)

  4. I am such a night owl. My sweetest time with the Lord is while everyone sleeps. I love that I’m not the only one! And I would prefer 9 am to 7, but that is possible very often. 🙂 I’m looking to follow those who love writing and love Jesus this year. Linking up with you through Gypsy Mama. Can’t wait to journey with you!

  5. Hi, Denise. Because I forgot to update your new address feed, I’ve missed your last several posts. But I appreciate your topic here. We often get beaten over the head and told there is one way to do things, if we want to call ourselves serious Christians.

    And then if we take that instruction to heart, we risk seeing our family, even our children, as the big, bad interrupting enemy. But your post reminds us of the bigger goal, the bigger deal: fully awake. This is a wider-eyed state, I think, that will transcend morning or evening.

    • Hey, Matthew. I’m glad you found your way over. I’ve been needing to stop by.

      And I agree with you, being fully awake to His presence and the Spirit’s leading does, indeed, transcend morning or evening. Well said.

  6. Denise,
    Another awesome post. Seems I cycle between being a night owl and morning song bird. For the last few months, though, I’ve been struggling with insomnia. Hormonal curse of a pre-menopausal woman, I’m sure. It’s not very helpful to one’s family when she’s at her best between 2 and 5 AM!! This too will pass . . . Blessings and smiles to you today, my sweet friend.

  7. Friend, like you, I’m not a morning person but married to one! He’s shifted my schedule just a bit, but it’s still a struggle to wake up with as much energy as he does. I have also felt guilty about not being ready-to-roll when some suggest quiet times are best had. Grace is such a beautiful gift for all of this, yes? (Love your blog! Thanks for visiting me today!)

  8. “So, if you’re like me, and you like the nighttime – when the rest of the world goes dark, and the darkness outside is like a veil to all other distractions, giving you greater focus – then give yourself permission to give that special time to Him, guilt-free.”
    ~ Oh how lovely!! Wonderfully said Denise! I completely echo your introduction of possibility that the night can be one of the most endearing times to connect with Him. Personally, when it comes to inspiration in writing, the darkened hours, where one day slips unnoticed into the next yet long before the Sun thinks to peak – this is when I settle. That time is so special to me as well. Now, I’ll admit, most of my life I have been a “morning person”, if that means waking semi-easily and beginning the day with a smile. Yet deep focus – that’s my night ritual too.
    I’m a firm believer that there is no RIGHT time over another to come to Him. In fact, we are moreso called to CONTINUALLY seek him, without cease, than we are asked to make it a sun-up practice. I wish we, as believers, wouldn’t dictate legalities such as this and call them sin vs righteousness. Because the fact and truth of the matter, is that our Maker desires us every minute of every day, but her will never say “Leigh, because you didn’t open my word at 5:15am, and since you waited until 11:35pm, my blessing cannot be yours in full.” What lies!
    Oh but forgive me!! I did not intend to be so long-winded. You’ve just created such a safe space, and your topic hit such a great point that it just fell out of me to reply. I am sorry to take up space! It was so nice to “meet” you over at my blog Denise. I’m overjoyed you came to say hi. I am following, starting today. And am very excited to see what other wonderful words of yours can spark thought to the days. 🙂

  9. I loved this. I am very much a night person, and it’s only recently I’ve given myself permission to spend my special times with God at night. I will often do a brief devotional in the morning, but my deeper times of study, prayer and reflection come most naturally in the waning hours of the day.

  10. morning person. . . which isn’t good when the kids aren’t quite ready for bed when i am and then i’m a cranky night person!!!
    i think i’ve just come to the point of craving the quiet of the morning. that is what pushes me out of bed more than anything. if i don’t get that time, then it’s onward with a busy day with busy kids with no breaks until bedtime. and that makes for an unhappy mama.

  11. Oh … “fully awake to see Jesus” is a wonderful thing. I think sometimes the early hours of the morning aren’t the best time. Sometimes the later hours of the day, when we’re fully awake, are better. Surely the point is that we see Him? So, yup, I sympathise with “the devotion dilemma”!

  12. This is awesome.
    And I am one of those annoying people that can be both a night person and a morning person.
    Like yesterday – I didn’t stumble into bed until 1AM because I was pretty sure I was going to get a snow day, and then three hours later my littlest woke up and my day began. And I was up (without a nap — even though it WAS a snow day (oh.. I ‘m a teacher) until 10pm and was fine. I wasn’t even tired at that point, but knew that I had to go to sleep in order to function well.

    Wow. More information than you needed. 🙂

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