A 4 A.M. Wake-up Call
So the morning went something like this…
It was 4 A.M.!
God: Rise & Shine! It’s time to think about everything that you are worried about.
Me: No thanks. I’m good.
God: How about now?
For. The. Love…
This is not how I wanted to begin my Sunday. Not even close. My bed was warm.
The house was dark and quiet. This was time to sleep.
BEFORE the busyness of church and errands and laundry kicked in. But as always when I have designed a solid plan, it goes sideways. And so now I am up.
Alright, God. I can hear you. We have work to do, you and I.
I was in the shower by 5:30, out the door by 6:30 and sitting at the Stop & Shop parking lot by 6:45. The store doesn’t open for 15 minutes and feeling too itchy to wait, I decide to zip over to the other location, which is close to church, so I could get the pear juice my mom wanted.
I got to the next Stop & Shop just in time for the doors to open. Yes! I took my canvas bag and walked in.
No pear juice.
I just stood there and laughed while the still groggy employee asked if I was okay. I told her it was one of those mornings and left.
And so here I sit, in my church’s library while the 8 A.M. service is happening, writing until it all makes sense.
Why I am up, why my mind is restless, why I can’t just be still this morning. Trying to figure it out.
This is the work God asked of me at 4 A.M., so I am doing it.
Here’s what I’ve discovered.
What I am NOT.
It is one week until Christmas and I am not wrapping packages, drinking hot cocoa and decorating the house to look like a beautiful Pier 1 or Pottery Barn picture.
I am not planning a big dinner, coordinating travel plans or getting excited to see my kids face when they realize Santa did, in fact, come to town.
What I am.
I am tired. It has been a liberating and impactful year, but it sprung from pain and disappointment and took hard work to recover. There has been illness with loved ones that just won’t go away. There have been financial stressors and emotionally draining weeks. Emotionally draining months really.
The evolution, transformation – the blooming – in 2019 was hard-fought.
And now I am done.
You may be done too.
I want you to know that it is okay. You are not alone.
Your feelings are valid and shared among many who struggle to feel merry and bright day after day.
If this season brings up loneliness, sadness or past heartache, remember you are not alone.
If you are missing your kids, your parents, your spouse, you are not alone.
If you are thinking about how many Christmases have come and gone and don’t know how many are yet to come, you are loved.
If you are wondering why on earth you are the only person who can’t seem to get it all together, you are in good company.
So now I know why God woke me at 4 A.M. It was to ensure that I could deliver this message to you, and to stand with you, so we can walk together, in love, with God.
So we can both remember that we are NOT ALONE. Not only do we have each other, but we also have HIM.
Advent, this season of what seems like endless waiting, is almost over.
The light, the birth of Jesus, and the promises this miracle brings cannot come fast enough.
Come, Lord Jesus.