I'm a creature of habit.
Almost every morning since I've been a Christian(about 10 years) I have woken up early, brewed a cup of strong coffee, and spent time reading the Word. For a long time this was my most treasured time in my day. It felt wonderful to soak up the Word, pray for the day and the people in my life, and then I was ready to face the day with my children.
Nowadays though, my children are often awake either before me, or they wake up as soon as I get out of bed and hear me walk past their doors. We do implement wake up times around here, which are great in theory, but just because they aren't allowed to get up until a certain time, doesn't necessarily mean they will sleep until that time(at least that's the case at my house,;) Since we have 4 children sharing a room right now the noise level can get a little out of control first thing in the morning, making it difficult to concentrate on anything much less your Bible study!
I also was noticing that when one child would get up to use the rest room, I'd start to get a little snappy with them. All while my Bible and journal lay open beside me. I definitely don't want my children to have it in their heads that Mama is mean when she reads the Bible. I was beginning to realize that my precious morning ritual had become an idol.
It's amazing how we can turn something so wonderful into something so ugly, isn't it?
So here is what I really feel that the Lord has laid on my heart for this season of my life. If the kids are all up at a reasonable hour(which they usually are, thankfully only Luke gets up earlier than 6:30, but he nurses himself back to sleep) then I will give them a cup of grapes, bananas, or cereal(not necessarily breakfast, but a little snack to tide them over), and we will all find a place in the living room to curl up with a blanket. They each can have a Bible, and a piece of paper and a crayon and they can draw a picture for Jesus, write a letter to God, or draw a picture of a Bible story they're looking at a picture of. The possibilities really are endless:).
The rule is that they can't be silly and that they need to be quiet during this time. I really try to encourage them and say,"You are so smart. I love hearing your thoughts, I want you to really work hard and read your Bible, and then when our quiet time is over you can tell me everything that you learned."
I would still love to be able to get up earlier than the kids in order to have a quiet time, but honestly most nights I'm up at least once with one child or another, so it's not totally realistic to be thinking I can get get up much earlier. Showing my children how wonderful and important it is to spend time with the Lord, is much more important than any quiet time alone anyway.
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