Rejoicing in ALL Circumstances… Rethinking How I Live into My Not-What-I-Would-Want Mornings

I awake to NOISE… kids that get up way too early for my liking.  And though I try to get up even earlier (5:30 a.m. gives me maybe 30 minutes of silence) the state of growing another human right now has made these efforts to awake that early almost impossible.  This morning, even getting up at 6, there was no quiet to be found.

I awake into NOISE… loud little boys on fire trucks, rolling hard and fast (and did I say loud?) through the house… and sisters picking at each other over silly things like sharing a hairbrush…

I awake into NOISE…exhausted and IRRITABLE… because I so long for silence it HURTS.  

How do we live into seasons of life that so conflict with the deepest longings in our being?  For me, a contemplative, my soul craves silent space, a quiet corner where I can breath or try to catch my breath with God and His Word, and then live into this life of mine.  But these moments are hard to come by in life right now.  So what then?

A verse that has kept finding its way to me lately has me rethinking how I live into my not-what-I-would-want mornings…

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances;
for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18  

How do you REJOICE in ALL circumstances, even this noisy, crazy, early morning life that can put me in the grumps?  

Well, maybe, you go with what you’ve got?  Maybe you embrace it?  If I can’t have quiet, why not invite the NOISE that are my kids into my attempts to be attentive to God?!

So we have started reading the Psalms in the morning, following the lectionary I normally long to do in silence.  I long to do this in silence, but you know what… that’s not my life right now.   So I open myself up to it, the noise and the crazy and the chaos, rather than fighting it.  I invited it in… we read together God’s Word, these loud little beings that make so much noise in the morning.  We read the Psalms, the Prayer Book of the Bible, and we take it in.

You know what else?  My girls have been excited to read the Psalms together.  Excited about reading Scripture… that is something to rejoice over!  They eagerly ask to take turns reading, reading words that are life to them, though they don’t fully understand it or know it yet, the LIFE that it is.  We take turns reading and then talk about it, and you know what?  God, he is still talking to me, but it is in the noise, it is in the invitation of including the crazy into what I would do in the silence spaces.

We decided we need a rejoicing song, so we end our time singing “This is the day, this is the day that the Lord has made, that the Lord has made, we will rejoice, we will rejoice and be glad in it…”  And you know what, REJOICING, it is happening!

More than anything, singing this little song taken from Psalm 118:24 has helped reorient my soul in the morning. I am reminded that this day… this day that started with kids full of energy and life and noise and chaos… this is the day God has made for me… this is my life and it is something to REJOICE in!   

Yes, I tend to thrive in practices of silence to commune with my Lord, but that is not my life right now.  So practices of reading Scripture with my kids is reminding me God can still speak to me and minister to my soul as I read with my children and hear the ways they see God in what we are reading.  Rather than being irritable and eager for them to head off to school so I can have my quiet time, I find myself grateful for the gift of each of my children as I watch them read God’s Word and as we sing together.  

I still seek out my silent space, that quiet corner to hear God, but this practice of inviting the noisy and the crazy and the chaos that is what I awake to every morning into a practice of seeking God is helping me to live into the will of God in Jesus Christ that is for me.  And in that I will REJOICE!

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances;
for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18  


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