I’m not an early riser but on Sundays, I become one. Usually, I’m at the church at 5:00 am. I can be found sitting at my desk updating blogs and Facebook, at the copier running off the scripts for Open Skies, or completing or checking the status of the worship screens for the 11:00 am worship service. There are things that must be accomplished prior to my staff and volunteer arrivals on Sunday morning.
Why get here so early? It is the quiet, really. Some things are just hard to get done in the chaos of the week and having a time to calmly prepare is worth the extra effort to get up early. Unless an acolyte is sick or one of the worship leaders has car trouble, my phone doesn’t ring and no one needs anything from me. It’s a good way to prepare for the execution of worship — when so many persons will need something from me to praise the Holy.
When folks find out about my Sunday morning ritual, they often ask what time do I go to bed? It depends on what great college football game is on or what plans my family has for me. But, even then, they know that Saturday evenings are in preparation for Sunday, so we don’t schedule much to happen. Occasionally, we will attend a concert but that is rare. Mostly, they allow me to relax and have space to prepare to worship. All of this means that I am generally in bed around 10 pm.
This morning, I did add something to my routine. I was up just a few minutes earlier and went for a walk. It is amazing how quiet it is that early in the morning (4:30 am today). But, again, it is all part of quietly centering and preparing for worship . . . and, for me . . . work.
How do you prepare yourself to encounter God? What is your routine? Do you give your soul time to prepare to be in the presence of God?
Step out of the chaos or your daily routine and encounter the Holy.