I don’t know how many times I have done it, but I know that I have slept through a few alarms in my life. I am and have always been a heavy sleeper. Whoever invented the phrase “sleeping like a rock” must have had someone like me in mind. It is not an easy thing for me to get roused in the morning. It may have to do with the fact that I am also a night owl, but that is a topic for another day.
This past Saturday, something happened that was both unusual for me personally and a demonstration of God’s grace. About two months ago, or so, I was asked by a friend of mine to speak at a youth breakfast for his church. I checked the calendar and confirmed that I would be able to go. That day came on Saturday.
The problem is that I did not set a reminder in my calendar and my friend did not text me during the week (something he thought about doing, but was unable to). So, I was completely unaware that the day that I was supposed to go to the breakfast had arrived. And, I was sleeping soundly in my bed waiting for the alarm on my phone to sound around 8:20 am. That is until I awoke at 7:30 am. Now, usually, when I wake up I am groggy and disoriented and it takes me a few minutes to orient myself to the fact that I had to get out of bed. However, that did not happen on Saturday.
When I woke up I was alert, refreshed, and did not have any problems getting out of bed. This is significant because of the reasons I mentioned earlier. If I had woken up like I normally do, I would have missed the text message that came twenty minutes later asking if I needed anything for that morning’s breakfast.
I quickly checked my calendar, realized what day it was, got ready, and headed out the door. All with enough time to drive to the church on time!
Now, you may be wondering why I am relating any of this. There are several reasons, but I will point out two lessons that I learned because of this.
First, God is gracious to us. God is more gracious toward us than we deserve or will ever understand. When I woke up on Saturday, it was not so that I would have a great day. It was so that God would not miss an appointment that He had set with those young men and women that would be attending the breakfast. I was an instrument available for the task and God needed me awake and ready to go so that I could speak about God’s love and grace. Which I did.
God is indescribably gracious toward us.
As I drove, I spent about thirty minutes of my hour-long drive giving God thanks for doing what only he could do. My alarm was set for twenty minutes after I needed to leave. But, God knew that I needed enough time to get sorted out so that I would receive that text message at 7:50 am.
Second, God is constantly at work in our lives and we need to acknowledge his presence. I am convinced that God’s grace is one of the greatest (or at least should be) motivations for worship. As I drove, I was just in awe of God. This whole thing may seem so small to others, but to me, it was just another example of why God is good and worthy of my worship. Even when you are not paying attention, God breaks through and shows how good he is.
My worship is not perfect. It can be inconsistent and inadequate at times. However, I keep looking to God, seeking to make sense of how and why He continues to be at work in my life. And, as I do, I find another reason to lift by voice in praise and incline my heart in worship to this gracious God.
I may, from time to time, sleep through an alarm. But, there is one thing I never want to do. I never want to get caught sleeping through God’s will. What I learned this past Saturday is that God is good at waking me up when I need to be getting ready for a task he has set before me. I am so thankful that he did because I would have missed out on a blessing from God and with His people.