by Ruth Bell Graham
Many years ago, I had been getting up early, fixing myself a cup of coffee, and then sitting in the rocker on the front porch while I prayed for each of our children and for each of theirs.
One morning I awoke earlier than usual. It was 5 o'clock, with dawn just breaking over the mountains. I collected my cup of coffee and settled into the old rocker. Suddenly, I realized a symphony of bird song was literally surrounding me. The air was liquid with music, as if the whole creation were praising God at the beginning of a new day.
from Decision magazine, January 2009
When I read this on the back cover of an old Decision magazine last night, I thought about how lucky I am. Each morning, my eyes open before the sun rises. It's just natural for me. I get out of bed and lace up my running shoes and go out for a walk or a run. It is during this time that I listen to nature, God's creation, and I am in awe every single day. The novelty of nature never wears off. It's always amazing to me. I usually take this time to myself and I talk to God each morning while I'm running. I don't know if the neighbors think I'm crazy as they see me speed by, yammering to myself. Most of them are probably still in bed. I try to remember how Jesus used to get up early in the morning to pray. It's in that silence, when everyone else is sleeping and creation is beginning to arise that it's easiest to hear God speak to me. I relish every morning and am grateful for each sunrise. I may have many obstacles to overcome, but every morning when I run just a little further than the day before, I remember that "I can do all things in Christ who strengthens me."