The Fourth Watch: Beginning early to build a foundation for the day.

I'm so #thankful that I made the decision to go to last night’s Bible study. My day yesterday was incredibly busy and my last meeting was unplanned and went late. I was exhausted and brain “fried” and I started telling myself that I was too tired, my brain too overwhelmed and traffic would be too hard to fight to get to Wednesday night Bible study at my church. I'd be late anyways so why bother?

As I headed home, I was convicted to turn around and go to Bible study. I'm glad I did. It was the last study until after the holidays, and last night it was all women and the pastor. As I raced in, I felt the busyness leave and a peacefulness overcome me. My Wednesday night Bible study always centers me on a peace that you can only know when you slow down and focus on the Lord. It was just what I needed. It's always what I need. God is the only one who can truly slow down the busyness of my life and keep me centered on what truly is important. I was able to just sit there and listen to the others share and I was able to share the overwhelmingness of my day. As my life has become scheduled, busy and successful with work, I mentioned that I wake up between 3 -3:30 am so that I'm able to stay focused on God. Some people think I’m crazy starting my day so early, I hear it from friends and colleagues all the time. I hear it enough that I start to think I may be a bit crazy, but there is a quietness and peace to that time of day, or night depending on your perspective. Waking up that early allows me to read the Bible, pray and focus on Christ. It keeps me humble as I see the mercy and grace that God extends as I live through my day. I’m able to humbly ask for forgiveness and repent. I see how pride can slowly and easily sneak into my life. Pride that doesn’t look like a sin because it is recognized as success by the world. A simple pride that can easily be explained as something beneficial. That earliness of the morning, the peacefulness, the quietness, the focus I’m able to obtain allows me to pray and be centered on the Lord which then allows me to set a strong foundation for my day. One of the women at study mentioned that 3am to 6 am is the 4th watch in the Bible as talked about in the Book of Matthew. So this morning I read some commentaries on the 4th watch and I thanked God because it's no coincidence that I'm up during this watch praying and focusing on Him. I’m #grateful & #humbled by His mercy and grace.

During the study we continued through Genesis and focused on learning more about Abram. There were lessons on family, relationships, money and faith. Just what I needed to hear. God is always faithful. Thankful for the 4th watch and for Christ’s love and mercy in my life. He is always by my side and all I need to do, even in the most busyness of times, is stay in relationship with Him and always make Him my first love.