This morning, after snoozing my alarm, I was lying there thinking about how my day would begin if I had actually turned the alarm off when I intended to snooze it. Would David’s alarm give me enough time to get everything done? If not, what would I give up for the sake of getting to school on time? My shower? Professional clothes? Putting on make-up and/or combing my hair? Eating breakfast? My quiet time? (Thinking about my house these days, “quiet” time is used loosely at best.lol) I thought about how it would be socially unacceptable for me to leave the house without showering (and rightfully so)! As for my clothes … hopefully I laid something out the night before, so I don’t have to think and fret. Hair and make-up aren’t a must, but still … I would feel self-conscious all day if I didn’t at least look at myself in the mirror. Breakfast … my body is conditioned to eat breakfast every day, so whether I ate it at home or at school, breakfast will be had! As much as I hated to admit it to myself, when I’m rushed in the morning, the first thing to go is my quiet time.
I started thinking about how skimping on my quiet would affect my day every bit – if not more than – any of the other parts of my morning routine. So I dragged my sleepy self out of bed and got going, so that I could see what God’s Word has to say specifically … and how I sensed the Holy Spirit applying it to me today. This is what I found.
Hair and Make-up: 1 Peter 3:3-4, “Don’t be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God. (NLT)
My family and students could probably tell you that, when I miss (or skip) my quiet time, there isn’t much gentle or quiet about my spirit. And I sooooo want to be precious in God’s sight!
Clothing: Colossians 3:12-14, “Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony.”
What if – instead of (or in addition to) deliberately choosing my clothes for the day – I would be deliberate about clothing myself with mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, forgiveness, and love?
Shower: Ephesians 5:25-26, “… Christ loved the church. He gave up His life for her to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word.”
Every time I skip my quiet time, it’s like skipping my morning shower. No matter how dressed up I get, I just never feel clean. When I don’t spend time in God’s Word, I’m not giving Christ the time to wash me with His Word. I know that His work on the cross is finished, but I want to give myself that time each day, so I feel clean. Verse 27 goes on to say that this washing is so that we can be presented to Christ Himself without a spot or wrinkle or blemish. When I leave the house – having woken up late or on time or early – I have to remember each and every day that it is not my family or friends, colleagues or students to whom I am presenting myself. It is Christ.
Breakfast … I’m starved! John 4:31-32, 34, “Meanwhile, the disciples were urging Jesus, ‘Rabbi, eat something.’ But Jesus replied, ‘I have a kind of food you know nothing about.’ ‘Did someone bring him food while we were gone?’ the disciples asked each other…. Then Jesus explained: ‘My nourishment comes from doing the will of God, who sent me, and from finishing His work.’”
At home or on the go, my body has no energy without fuel; likewise, neither do our spirits. Just as Jesus was energized by doing the will of God … if we are going to live out our true identity in Christ – members of His body (Eph 5:29-30) … sealed by His Holy Spirit (Eph 1:13) (… just the 2 we’ve talked about in Sunday school) – we must draw our energy from God by following His will and direction in our daily lives.
As you check yourself in the mirror today (maybe when you’re washing your hands for the 100th time), think about your spiritual clothing. Has your commitment to mercy, kindness, love, etc. faded like the lip gloss you’re touching up … or the tie you’re straightening? Have you picked up some dirt? Are you hungry?
Now what? … I think you know.