Waking in the morning to be present to my husband, my little ones, much less my Lord and Savior, is something that I have to really struggle through on the daily.
Some have told me that after having children they became morning people. This has yet to be true in my case. In fact, I think I may have regressed in the department of mornings. There have been a few things that I have tried over the years and non have stuck probably due to my uber phlegmatic heart.
Writing this out, there is a temptation to get discouraged. I know I am called to know, love, and serve my Lord with every breath that I take from sun up to sun down, but I also know that He knows me and that He loves me where I am - sleepy eyed mixed with some grouchy and a cold cup of coffee because that's just my life. Well, that plus all the desperate aspirations whispered here and there.
He has met me over the course of these same sleepy years in many different ways, but none more than the gift of the present moment.
"During the course of the day, try to keep yourself united to God either by frequent aspirations and raising of the mind towards him, or by the simple gaze of pure faith, or, still better, by a certain repose of the depth of your soul and of all your being in accompanied by a complete disengagement from all exterior objects of this world. It belongs to God himself to show you which of these three methods you should adopt to unite yourself with him by the movement, the attraction and the facility which he will give you; for this union with God depends on the various states of prayer to which grace raises souls. Each of these states has its particular attraction; one must recognize one's disquiet or excitement, always gently sweetly, and peacefully, as St. Francis de Sales says."
-Fr. Jean Pierre de Caussade, S.J., Self-Abandonment to Divine Providence
After I read this passage, I thought, I can do aspirations! Aspirations and even simple gazes (thanks to images and icons around our home) are what my soul moves towards throughout the day any time I can settle into the gift of my present moment, no matter what that moment may be. I may not presently have a solemn quiet prayer time that looks like beautiful holiness (not saying that I shouldn't still strive for this goodness, it's just harder for me right now) but I can whisper, "Come Holy Spirit.", "My Lord and My God.", gaze here, gaze there, "God I need you.", "Lord, hear my heart.", "Jesus, hold me!" from sun up to sun down.
That whole paragraph is tremendously encouraging! I love how it acknowledges that God himself will show which of these methods we are each to adopt, too. Everything is gift, everything is grace, everything is the Lord, thanks be to God!
So whether my spiritual maturity moves its way into finding a quiet space to share my soul with my Savior or if I have one hand on my cold cup of coffee, one hand on trying to encourage my littles into a rhythm for the day that is good and serving, and my heart focused on trying for moments of conversation with the One who made me, as St. Julian of Norwich once said, "All shall be well, all shall be well, and all manners of things shall be well."
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