For as long as I can remember, I have been what you might call a "night person". I'm guessing most of us are born with a natural bent toward being a night person or a morning person, and based on my experience, I'm not sure it's possible to change this. Sometimes I kind of wish I did better with mornings, but for the most part, I try to accept this part of who I am and make the best of it.
One rather strange phenomenon I have discovered about being a night person is a quandary I face quite possibly every single night, or at least on a very regular basis. It happens after the kids go to bed and the house is finally quiet. I find myself torn between two possibilities and never very sure which is the better choice.
Should I sleep or stay up and do things? Trying to answer this question leads me to ask many other questions... like, Which do I need more - sleep or the satisfaction of getting something done? How do I actually make the most of my "night-person-ness"? Am I going to miss out on an opportunity I'll never get back if I just go to bed?
Unfortunately, on many nights, rather than coming to a conclusion about how I should spend my night owl window of time, I end up doing what some might call "piddling around" for a while, until it is finally so late that I tell myself, now I really must go to bed!
If you think this sounds a little exhausting, I'll be honest - it is. By God's grace though, there are also many nights in which something good does come about. Maybe I happen upon a podcast or video that includes a message I really needed to hear. Or maybe through the process of writing in one of my journals, or even washing the dishes, I experience a newfound kind of peace or gratitude. I guess the crazy thing about it is that I'm never quite sure what the good thing will be or when it will come or if it will come at all.
Recently I was listening to the 500th episode of The Holy Post podcast, and near the end the hosts were all trying to give their predictions about what might happen in the next 10 years. One of them, Kaitlyn, gave a very insightful answer. She said, "My prediction is rooted in absolute certainty, which is that the Holy Spirit will continue to work in ways that we do not expect among people that we don't expect, in ways and in places we don't expect." Essentially, she challenged us to realize that throughout history and throughout the world, we often think we know how things are going to go, but God has constantly shown up in ways, places, and people that we would not have expected.
With this insight in mind, I wonder if it would behoove me to practice thinking differently about my nighttime dilemma. Maybe the question, how can I make the most of this window of time? isn't the right question at all. Maybe it doesn't actually matter like I think it does. Maybe I can let go of the pressure I put on myself to figure that out night after night.
I don't know if you are a night person or not, but I bet all of us have areas of our lives in which we put pressure on ourselves to figure out which way to go. We assume one way is better than the other and we are always trying to find the "better way". Remember that famous line by Robert Frost, "Two roads diverged in a wood and I - I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference." Am I the only one who hears those words and feels tempted to turn every choice into a two-path situation, wondering if I will actually pick the right path?
Please don't misunderstand me - I realize there are times when it is quite clear that one way is right and one way is wrong. But for all the other times, what if I stop stressing out about which path to take and start remembering who is with me on the path?
If I choose to wash the dishes, God is with me. If I choose to go to bed, God is with me. If I choose to write in my journal, God is with me. Whatever you are doing right now, God is with you.
There is a lot going on in the ACSD community these days. Spring sports have begun, Newsies hits the stage this weekend, and preparations continue for Serve-a-Thon, the Global 6K for Water, and many other spring events. In all of this activity, and in whatever activities are ahead for you this spring, may we all remember that for each decision, there may be another way beyond what we can see. May God's Spirit continue to move among us, even in ways we least expect.
Pray with me...
... Lord, let prayer and an awareness of Your presence be the basis for every decision that is made for this year's Serve-a-Thon
In all your ways submit to him, and He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:6
... Father, we praise You for the ways that Your Spirit has worked and will continue to work in the ACSD community and throughout the world
Look at the nations and watch— and be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told. Habakkuk 1:5
... God, we lift up this week's production of the musical Newsies and pray that You would use the telling of this story to reflect the truths of the bigger story of redemption that You are writing
And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit. 2 Corinthians 3:18
Thanks for taking the time to read this blog and pray for Alliance Christian School District! Lord willing, I plan to publish a new blog post weekly on Wednesdays throughout the school year. Feel free to subscribe (at the bottom of this page) if you'd like to be notified each time a new blog post has been published. We also have a prayer team that is always open for new pray-ers to join. If you'd like to learn more, email me at email@example.com.
~ Carrie Warner, ACSD Prayer Team Coordinator
Soli Deo Gloria To God alone be the glory