I hate early mornings. The only redeemable quality of mornings is coffee. Otherwise, I have no use for early mornings. I totally got that from my mom. My dad gets up early for no reason just so he can tell people about how early he got up. The old saying is “Nothing good ever happens after midnight.” For me, “Nothing good ever happens before 8 a.m..” I have always been this way, even when I was a full-time farmer. I prefer to not get up early but I was usually still running the tractor hours after most farmers were asleep.
The last two mornings, I have had a visitor at 3 a.m.. You read that correctly. Way to stinkin’ early for me. This particular visitor comes in to wake me up and doesn’t even have the nerve to bring me coffee. Good thing he is cute. My son has decided that at 3 in the morning, it would be the perfect time to see his dad. I am sound asleep when I hear the door open and then Ty says “Hand, help me.” He can’t climb into be yet because he is too short, so he is asking for assistance. Why he chooses to come in at such an ungodly hour instead of staying in his own bed is beyond me.
The problem with him sleeping in my bed means that my sleep just ended. He usually goes right back to sleep, but do I??? Not hardly. He is hogging the bed, slapping my back fat, kicking me, or swirming to get comfortable. Yeah a real delight. (Sarcasm, just in case you missed it.) The first morning he did this, he went right back to sleep until six. Still way to early for me, but at least I could go back to sleep for three more hours. After he woke up, something unexpected happened. He decided that his dad needed to be sung a song at 6 in the morning. (I didn’t by the way, I needed sleep or coffee. Not a song.) It was still dark outside and I hear this small child voice singing, “Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound.”
Let me tell you what. I did not appreciate it at all in the moment. I was tired and quite cranky. I refused to hear the sweet sound because I was caught up in my need for sleep. Later in the day, I was reflecting on the events of the morning. It hit me all of a sudden. Amazing grace, how sweet the sound. If you have ever heard a child sing that one line, you know just how angelic it is. I believe it would put a smile on the face of Jesus and make his day to hear a small child belt that out. (Even at 3 a.m.)
How did I react to hearing it? I rolled over and tried to go back to sleep. I believe in that early morning wake up song, God was reminding me of a few things.
- My son is learning what we are teaching him. We have 3 songs that we sing to him as we rock him to sleep: Jesus loves me, Amazing Grace, and 10,000 Reasons. He is learning so much, so I must be careful what I am teahing him.
- God wanted to remind me that His grace is on display for me to see even when I am being selfish and unwilling to see it. At 10 a.m. after a few cups of coffee, I would have seen that, but 6 a.m. not so much.
- God’s mercy is new every morning. My son and his song was a reminder of that. God delights in His children and wants us to know that He is watching over us as we navigate this crazy world. He promises to never leave us even on our worst day.
- God reminded me just how lucky I am to be a father and a husband. I can remember (barely) what it was like to be single and childless. Those days were filled of living for myself. Those days are long gone. I couldn’t be more thankful of that fact. I would never trade one day with my wife and son for a thousand days of being single. (Those single days almost got me killed repeatedly, but we don’t have time for all that!)
I believe God wants to show us daily His Amazing Grace. But if we aren’t careful, we will miss it. We get so bombarded by negativity, self-centeredness, and a thousand things that went wrong today that we miss out on the one thing that went right. So maybe you should pause right now and look for the one thing God is trying to show you. You may have to weed through all the baggage, pressures, and pains to find it, but I guarantee that it is there.
What “Amazing Grace” story do you have? What is that one thing that you saw was positive or redeemable about the awful day you had? I would love to hear about it. Feel free to share your story.
Grace and peace to you as you get serenaded by a 2-year-old at 6 in the morning. It truly was a sweet sound.
P.S. I thanked him at lunch for singing to me that morning, where he very humbly grinned and bit my arm!