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SeanHobson
Member



Joined: 2005/12/9
Posts: 150
Cleveland, OH

 And in the morning, rising up a great while before day…

Mar 1:35 And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.

Dear beloved brethren,

I would not to waste our time on that which hath already been , nor do I think my situation deserving a thread of its own. However, I fear if I depend on my searching into the old threads alone, my finding will be incomplete and insufficient to compel me to imitate our Lord in this area. Therefore, this thread is an inquiry into and open discussion of Morning Prayer.

How do you do it? How do you wake up at 3am, 4 am, or 5am, yea a great while before dawn and seek the face of God?

What advice do the wise old men of God that sit in the gates of this forum have? Links to old threads, articles, sermons, books, whatever means profitable is desired.

Suggestions: I have tried in vain the following: Cell phone under the pillow.
Sleeping on the floor.
Going to sleep at 6 or 7pm.
Two alarm clocks.

Not as if any of these methods are bad or weak in themselves; I’m sure they’ve been the means for many a saint to wake up unto God each morning. It’s just my lack of self-discipline, and sinful, willful choices easily overpowered them. Though a battle is won here and there, for the most part no consistency is established and I lie in bed defeated.

If any that do have discipline in this area respond to this thread, please attempt to answer the following questions and/or leave suggestions:

How did waking up early help your reading/prayer life?

What benefits followed having extra time towards other matters?

How did you remain consistent, disciplining your body?

How do you deal with variables in life? Such as late night/overnight visitors,
increased school/work load etc.

What was it like walking throughout the day knowing you spent over an hour with God?


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Sean Hobson

 2007/8/6 21:31Profile
tjservant
Member



Joined: 2006/8/25
Posts: 1658
Indiana USA

 Re: And in the morning, rising up a great while before day…

"The men who have done the most for God in this world have been early on their knees. He who fritters away the early morning, its opportunity and freshness, in other pursuits than seeking God will make poor headway seeking Him the rest of the day. If God is not first in our thoughts and efforts in the morning, He will be in the last place the remainder of the day."

E. M. Bounds


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TJ

 2007/8/6 23:14Profile
IRONMAN
Member



Joined: 2004/6/15
Posts: 1924
IN HEAVENLY PLACES WITH JESUS

 Re: And in the morning, rising up a great while before day…

Bro Sean
Greetings in Jesus' Name by Whose Blood we are Saved.AMEN.

are you seeking to spend time with God because He is God or do you expect something from Him?

God has oft woken me up in the middle of the night, sometimes i just rolled over and went back to sleep but after a time i took hold of the Grace afforded me and got out of bed. i did have to be checked a few times for wanting to wake up and pray so that i would have a story to tell, rather than wanting to be in His Presence. We all need to watch out for that hence the question i asked above. Prayer is an Empowering thing if one is touched by the Will of God and conforms to it. Whether it is a minute or an hour isn't really an issue, it is whether we have come away from prayer Imbued with the Knowledge and Desire to do God's will.

i let our Lord wake me up or call me as He needs me to, other times i just go before Him to be in awe of Him. He draws me to Himself using His Spirit and burdens me. This can happen at any time and so i find myself praying a work sometimes as i go about my duties.

i pray God extend His Grace to you to desire to be in His Presence and in that i pray God pour His Love into you.AMEN.

Grace and Peace is ours in Jesus' NAme. AMEN.


_________________
Farai Bamu

 2007/8/6 23:29Profile
PaulWest
Member



Joined: 2006/6/28
Posts: 3405
Dallas, Texas

 Re:

Brother, if you can somehow deny flesh and get up to study the Word and pray early in the morning, you will make great strides in your walk, and make them very quickly. The best way to get up in the morning is to let God wake up you. Before you go to bed tonight, ask the the Holy Spirit to awaken you early in the morning for this very purpose. He will wake you up...but you must then [i]get up[/i] or you will quickly fall back asleep.

The mornings are the best time to seek God for strength to overcome the wicked day. Persistence is the secret, brother. Meet God in the secret place, early. Confess you weaknesses, your utter wothlessness and how much you need Him. If you can somehow wait for Him, and finally break through, He will touch your inner man according to the riches of His glory and strengthen you with might. The Word will suddenly come alive on the page, and your prayer will take wings upward to the throne of God.

Brother if you make it though and touch Jesus, you'll have the victory throughout the entire day. You'll commune with God all day long in your heart and you'll bless others just by talking to them. You'll be a vessel filled with salt and light. This is the secret men like Mueller and John Hyde and McCheyne knew about, and it's what I believed sustained their ministries. But it sure takes discipline! It's the hardest thing in the world. Your flesh will squeal and kick and bite and thrash like she's being murdered...because she is! I've failed and given into my flesh innumerable times. When I miss God at the beginning of the day, I fight an uphill battle all the rest of the day, and I am miserable and useless.

Remember that manna won't carry over. It breeds worms and stinks after 24 hours. And you can't be given manna by John Wesey or Spurgeon; you can't subsist off food that other man collected. You'll have to go out of your tent and collect it yourself [i]each morning[/i]. Just like the Apostle Paul said, if you don't [i]work[/i], you don't eat.


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Paul Frederick West

 2007/8/6 23:34Profile









 Re:

Quote:
Remember that manna won't carry over. It breeds worms and stinks after 24 hours. And you can't be given manna by John Wesey or Spurgeon; you can't subsist off food that other man collected. You have to go out of your tent each morning and collect it yourself. Just like the Apostle Paul said, if you don't work, you don't eat.

 2007/8/6 23:46
Compton
Member



Joined: 2005/2/24
Posts: 2732


 Re:

Tremendous topic Sean. I love your transparency.

When I do not persist, I also feel it throughout the day. Yesterday the Christian was abiding in Christ, feeding on the bread of life as Paul West says, and so today he feels he can "take a break" and try to live off of yesterday's taste. But in his own strength, the decietfulness of a spoiled nature can surprise him with unexpected ambitions, easily hurt feelings, fear, political gossip. It's awful...and not a break at all for the Christian but actually quite draining.

But you know all of that ...I am just sharing my own failures with you so that you do not feel all alone and defeated in this area.

I mentioned a similar theme in the recent Healing of the Soul thread...I liken putting on Christ as part of getting dressed for the day. Afterall, being properly clothed is important! Those who are looking to be strong enough that they no longer need to rise each day desperate for a touch from the Lord are under basic misgivings about the Gospel. (I believe) Better we limp feebly and painfully to Christ everyday, then run away like those healed lepers satisfied with their own strength. Then Jesus asked, "Were not ten made clean? But the other nine, where are they?

Quote:
Persistence is the secret, brother.



There is no shortcut to this one. Yet I do have one general tip that I have found helps: stay close to the Lord throughout the day. Prayer is not wearisome, except when we make it so by neglect. This business of entering and exiting is what makes prayer wearisome. Keep your heart well oiled in the Spirit during the day and it will not creak when you open it in the morning.

We might say that a prayer life grows tenderly but steadily like so many flowers. Your morning prayer and devotions is like a well kept garden you tend to. You break the soil, you plant the seed, and water the buds, and with God's blessing, their colors break forth! Yet we cannot stay in our private gardens all day. Abiding in the lord throughout the rest of the day is like walking among the wild flowers. This is my Father's world, and to my listening ears all nature sings. How wonderful, and timely, I are exchanges with the lord while working or driving--- I'm sure many of us can remember some were so natural, growing in unexpected and wild places more beautiful then any man-made garden. Behold the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin,... I need to keep in mind, that I ready myself for prayer best by staying in prayer. "Abide in me, and I in you."

Here is another very practical tip that might help: being that I am an impulsive creative night owl with about 15 ideas in my head all the time, mental discipline for waiting on the Lord in the morning is one of the hardest battles I have had to fight. (alot...) So I stopped beating myself up about it, got myself a cheap mp3 player, downloaded some great bible studies (such as the Zac Poonen through the bible series)...or even some audio scriptures themselves, get up early and jump on the treadmill. After about 20-30 minutes my mind and body are revived, and through listenin to the Word, my heart and spirit is focused intently on spiritual concerns. So once I shower, I'm wide awake, and more ready for prayer! Sometimes I need to leave the house, because it becomes noisy even at 5:00 am with the kids waking for school... I'll take my mp3 player to the gym and then get to the office well enough before everyone where it's still quiet and draw close. I think it sweetens the air there...

I really admire those men who can readily roll out of bed, alert. I've always been somewhat of a night owl...but if I get physical first I can be up and at 'em by 4:30 or 5:00.

Blessings,

MC


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Mike Compton

 2007/8/7 0:48Profile
Spitfire
Member



Joined: 2004/8/3
Posts: 633


 Re: How?

Hi Sean. I love you, Brother. I shall never forget your beautiful face!...and your heart...Ok. How do you overcome the sleepies to get out of bed and seek God? I'm just going to give you my testimony in this area.

I realized that I was in a spiritual slumber (which you have done). I prayed to God that he would stick me with a pin, shock me with a cattle prod, bring my slumbering soul to attention, and I prayed that he would do whatever it took to cause me to respond to the alarm that I knew was going off in the spirit. It wasn't long until I couldn't sleep. My thirst for God was so overpowering that I was up all hours of the night and it wasn't a matter of having to make myself get up, it was a matter of having to make myself go back to bed so I could work the next day.

You are so well on your way, Dear One! Just ask God to do what only He can do. Ask God to help you love him more than anything else in the world. Ask God to tear down everything in your heart and life that is exalting itself above Him. He loves to answer those kinds of prayers, Friend!

Here's a song for you:

You are the air I breathe
You are the air I breathe
Your Holy Presence living in me

Ask God to become your air. Love, Dian.


 2007/8/7 7:51Profile
death2self
Member



Joined: 2006/9/28
Posts: 192
Washington DC area

 Re:

Hi Sean,

It's been a process of sorts as most things are in the kingdom of God. I used to attend a Korean church most early mornings for prayer but heard back in early 2004 that I needed to pray at home. I had no idea of how to begin and actually the first time I fell asleep for a couple of hours.

Ask God to do whatever He needs to do in your life to bring you a place where you can seek Him early in the morning and ask Jesus to order it and He will do it! When I entered into covenant with the Lord about this and was serious about it, He stepped in so I would encourage you to do the same. It's not been a pretty process for me but I can testify that the Lord has been faithful. He's been faithful when I've rolled over, when I've missed it and has lovingly disciplined me when I simply chose to stay in bed because it was warm and I was too tired or too whatever...

When I started getting up to pray, I put my cellphone under my pillow and this worked for a while. Later I heard in prayer not to set my alarm any more. I simply ignored this and said that couldn't be God and begin to miss my early morning time with the Lord when I realized that I failed to obey Him. Once I repented and obeyed, the Holy Spirit has been faithful to awaken me for several years without an alarm clock. If He orders my steps, I don't need to use an alarm clock.

To get up in the morning, requires that I go to bed when the Lord requires as well and I've struggled at time because I didn't want to go to bed early, sometimes quite early. Allow the Holy Spirit to order your steps and he'll tell you what to do.

Here's answers to the specific questions you raised.

Quote:
How did waking up early help your reading/prayer life?

Starting your day with the Jesus is the only way to go. You need that daily manna that only Jesus can give you as you seek His face in prayer and in reading the scriptures. There's no substitute for that.

Reading the scriptures will increase your desire to read them and as you spend more time in prayer, you will desire more time in prayer. He began to bring more conviction about my ways and began to open the scriptures up to me as I submitted to this discipline. It's not a quid pro quo deal but He will meet you as you obey Him.

Quote:
What benefits followed having extra time towards other matters?

For a season, the Lord allowed me to return to bed so I would spend a couple of hours in prayer and the scriptures and then take a short nap before I had to go work. It was a wonderful season of time.

Those days are behind me and if I don't pray and read the scriptures when He directs it, there's no time to do it. The walk is progressive and Jesus has been extraordinarily kind to me but has forced me to become more disciplined.

Quote:
How did you remain consistent, disciplining your body?

There have been times when I've been lax and the Lord has made life so dry and barren that I can't live without time in prayer and the scriptures. Whenever I've tried to make it about how I feel, it's been difficult but the Lord wants my eyes to be upon Him.

Quote:
How do you deal with variables in life? Such as late night/overnight visitors,

It means that you go to bed when the Lord orders and don't have visitors over unless He directs. If my life is no longer my own, I can't be the decision-maker and the controller of my life.

This sounds trite but it's very true and quite painful because most people want to run their own life.

Quote:
What was it like walking throughout the day knowing you spent over an hour with God?

It's been a real blessing. Without my daily manna, it doesn't take long to starve. It was not some great accomplishment because the Holy Spirit orders it and gives me the strength to make it through oftentimes in the midst of weakness.

Blessings to you Sean, the Lord Jesus loves to order our time with Him. He is faithful to do in your heart. I'm excited to see what Jesus is going to do...





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Ed Pugh

 2007/8/7 10:49Profile
Talkn2u
Member



Joined: 2006/12/31
Posts: 196


 Re:

Good Morning!!!
I am not a wise old man of God, but I am a Woman with a Love and Passion for The Word, and our God...
I would love to interject here...
I am awaken early each and every morning; to spend that time in the Word and before my Father.
I do not use an alarm...
My thirst for Truth over the past decade has been Honored by the Lord and He lovingly wakes me up and spend time with Him.
It is in those early, quiet hours that His Word is open and falls in torrents into my spirit.

The Praise and the Fellowship we share is indescribable....
and
when I go out into the workplace, His Word and His Spirit is planted in me and when opportunities arise He pours out of me, onto those in desperation that do not know Him.

How did I come to this Place?
I fell in love with Jesus; when I truly realized that He loved me.
It was an amazing reality.
And once I knew that He loved me...And I recognized Grace for the first time in my life, to the magnitude that I do...
I wanted to Know HIM...
So I began to study His Word...
Not to receive anything, but to KNOW HIM

My study times grew from one or two hours to sometimes 8 and 10...
I was raising four children at that time, as a single mother, so I had to awaken early in the night to get study time in before they got up and the busyness of the day pounced on me.

But it was NO EFFORT to get up.
Do you have to drag a child out of bed on Christmas morning to go open presents...???

I have been that way now for nearly 12 years.. The more I KNOW of Him, the more I want to KNOW of HIM.

I have found that I desire to be in His Presence above the presence of any other...

The cost? Is actually a reward...for I have learned to rejoice in the fellowship of His sufferings....

Pain, heartache and the cares of this world have been remarkable vehicles to drive me to the Cross, to bring me to my knees at the Foot of the Throne.

I live to Glorify Him...
My children are grown and gone..the house is quiet and to myself...I am in the best position EVER...
And
there is a gorgeous view of the mountains outside of my balcony window...
there I go to the mountain and meet with Him. It is the best way in the world to start my day...
and to end it.

Oh I pray that for you and every other person to come to this place of hunger and thirst to KNOW Him...our God, Our Saviour, Our Redeemer, Lord and Master !!!!

thanks for letting spill over...
Bonnie

 2007/8/7 11:12Profile
LoveHim
Member



Joined: 2007/6/14
Posts: 562
Indiana, US

 Re:

e m bounds..

Begin the Day with Prayer

I ought to pray before seeing any one. Often when I sleep long, or meet with others early, it is eleven or twelve o'clock before I begin secret prayer. This is a wretched system. It is unscriptural. Christ arose before day and went into a solitary place. David says: "Early will I seek thee"; "Thou shalt early hear my voice.'' Family prayer loses much of its power and sweetness, and I can do no good to those who come to seek from me. The conscience feels guilty, the soul unfed, the lamp not trimmed. Then when in secret prayer the soul is often out of tune, I feel it is far better to begin with God -- to see his face first, to get my soul near him before it is near another. -- Robert Murray McCheyne
THE men who have done the most for God in this world have been early on their knees. He who fritters away the early morning, its opportunity and freshness, in other pursuits than seeking God will make poor headway seeking him the rest of the day. If God is not first in our thoughts and efforts in the morning, he will be in the last place the remainder of the day.

Behind this early rising and early praying is the ardent desire which presses us into this pursuit after God. Morning listlessness is the index to a listless heart. The heart which is behindhand in seeking God in the morning has lost its relish for God. David's heart was ardent after God. He hungered and thirsted after God, and so he sought God early, before daylight. The bed and sleep could not chain his soul in its eagerness after God. Christ longed for communion with God; and so, rising a great while before day, he would go out into the mountain to pray. The disciples, when fully awake and ashamed of their indulgence, would know where to find him. We might go through the list of men who have mightily impressed the world for God, and we would find them early after God.

A desire for God which cannot break the chains of sleep is a weak thing and will do but little good for God after it has indulged itself fully. The desire for God that keeps so far behind the devil and the world at the beginning of the day will never catch up.

It is not simply the getting up that puts men to the front and makes them captain generals in God's hosts, but it is the ardent desire which stirs and breaks all self-indulgent chains. But the getting up gives vent, increase, and strength to the desire. If they had lain in bed and indulged themselves, the desire would have been quenched. The desire aroused them and put them on the stretch for God, and this heeding and acting on the call gave their faith its grasp on God and gave to their hearts the sweetest and fullest revelation of God, and this strength of faith and fullness of revelation made them saints by eminence, and the halo of their sainthood has come down to us, and we have entered on the enjoyment of their conquests. But we take our fill in enjoyment, and not in productions. We build their tombs and write their epitaphs, but are careful not to follow their examples.

We need a generation of preachers who seek God and seek him early, who give the freshness and dew of effort to God, and secure in return the freshness and fullness of his power that he may be as the dew to them, full of gladness and strength, through all the heat and labor of the day. Our laziness after God is our crying sin. The children of this world are far wiser than we. They are at it early and late. We do not seek God with ardor and diligence. No man gets God who does not follow hard after him, and no soul follows hard after God who is not after him in early morn.

 2007/8/7 12:38Profile





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