There was a time when I was not a morning person, hard to believe. “Alarm Clock Blessing” is an article I wrote roughly ten years ago that speaks to God’s ability to transform even the orneriest of sleepers…
Thinking about the gestures of God, I can’t help but think of this one thing… I have told of this blessing a few times, never thinking of it as special or unique, just hoping it would encourage others as they learn to put their faith in God’s word. It personifies for me just how great the One and Only Living God is. It is the first time I recall believing God for something and knowing when I received it; it could have only come from above.
Throughout my life, I have had many alarm clocks. First was my sister, then my mother, followed by numerous friends, buzzers, and even a CD player, to name a few. Ask my mom and she will tell you, I do not respond well to being awoken, in any manner. I am not a morning person… I am non-responsive; I may or may not move, and am prone to screaming, without getting up.
As a high school student, my mom and I developed a pattern, my alarm would sound, and I would turn it off and lay there motionless, and eventually my loving mother would knock and open the door to my room and ask, “Are you going to school today?” I would hesitate and groan a “yyeeesss,” and in all my teenage glory force myself from bed to shower to dress to out the door. As my disdain for waking up became well known in my social circle, my friends joined in with early morning wake up calls to give me encouragement about the pending school day, and this went on for four years of high school.
Fast forward to college. While I still received the occasional wake-up call from friends, my mother was not knocking on the door, and in essence, I was on my own. Thus began the “alarm clock dance”, which was similar to the NASCAR “hat dance” – my wake up call was sponsored by a different alarm clock on a daily basis for two and half years. I had a buzzing bell, a beeping radio, CD player utilizing every CD in my collection from classical to country to gospel to praise to rap and back again, and I even purchased a telephone that made wake up calls, all resulting in painful morning experiences. Regardless of the method, I could not shake the jolted, jittery and “forced-to-the-face-the-world” feelings that alarms produced in me.
Then in 1996, I read “Can You Stand to be Blessed,” by Bishop T.D. Jakes. As a college sophomore/junior, this book compelled me to pray and believe… and of all the things I could have prayed for, I prayed for the ability to wake up without an alarm clock. I no longer wanted to be stressed “up” by whatever unbearable noise I had assigned to interrupt my sleep on any given morning. So there I was alone with God, reminding him that I had eight o’clock classes, liked doing laundry at four or five in the morning (I had all the machines to myself), and enjoyed watching SportsCenter before heading out to face my fellow 49ers (UNC Charlotte).
In all His majesty and glory, God answered that simple prayer. It may seem like a small thing to you, but to me, it was transformational! I never missed a class because I overslept. I was never rushed and still today; I do not use an alarm clock 97% of the days out of the year (and that 3% is about my stubbornness! While I trust God to wake me in time, I do not always trust myself to be obedient and rise!)
There are countless reasons why I stand in awe of our Heavenly Father, why Jesus amazes me, and why I depend on the Holy Spirit to comfort and guide me. My alarm clock blessing is just one of them. “Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!” Luke 1:45 (NIV)