“If you will meet with Me for 40 days in a row, before dawn, “I’ll solve all of your problems.” That was the quote that I either read or heard which got me enrolled in Jesus’, “Early Morning School of Prayer.” Mark 1:35 says, “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where He prayed.” Some have wondered how and where Jesus got His insights and power to perform miracles, and I’m coming to believe more and more that those insights and that power came directly from Jesus spending time with the Father, “Very early in the morning.”
Over the last 2 years I have faithfully attended God’s, “Early Morning School of Prayer”, and when I say “early morning”, I mean 4 AM sharp. Since then, I have sensed more favor from the Lord, had more “divine coincidences” happen, and have seen more people’s lives go from chaos and ashes to order and beauty. I do sleep in on Saturday mornings for my wife’s sake and to snuggle with her, but the other 6 days I am out walking the perimeter of the church by 4 AM, thanking the Lord for the wonderful things He’s teaching me and thanking Him for the good things that have happened on the previous day. The bottom line for me is that the Lord has made it absolutely worth my while to give up a little early morning shut-eye for the perks that come from being with the King of the Universe.
In his excellent book, “Awaken the Dawn”, Ernest Gentile writes, “…there is a special presence of God experienced only by those who awaken the dawn.” He also writes, “A person who regularly starts the day with prayer will do more for God accidentally than he/she ever did on purpose!”
At 4 AM there is such a peace in the air outside that it’s as if our prayers have minimal hindrances in getting through to God’s throne room. It’s almost as if our “very early morning prayers” go right to the top of God’s “To Do” list. To be honest, I like the extra blessings and gifts that the Lord gives to me simply by meeting with Him when hardly anyone else is up. There’s so much more that I could write on this subject, but I’ll stop now.
If you find that you’re not really seeing answers to your prayers, or that your prayer life is becoming a little bit boring, may I suggest that you set your alarm to go off early enough for you to “awaken the dawn.” You may just find that the Teacher has been saving a place for you in His classroom. And if you don’t sense God’s extra favor and blessings, well, you can always go back to bed.
Darin G. Olson
Pastor, Junction City, Oregon
Church of the Nazarene