Sovereign Grace Ministries has a good post by C.J. Mahaney, Joshua Harris and Jeff Purswell about how they nurture their faith through spiritual disciplines, but particularly the early morning spiritual battle to set the mind on the cross as we wake up in a bleary-eyed stupor from a night of rest. C.J. says:

Well, what brings me here so early in the morning is my need for the Savior, an awareness of my need for the Savior, and some eagerness that I will, through my meditation on Scripture, freshly encounter the Savior. So that is what brings me here.

Although I need to add that I am never brought here apart from a conflict in my soul. Indwelling sin is a particular and formidable opponent against all practices that involve the spiritual disciplines.

So this does not take place effortlessly.

I’m now 54 years old, so even after 35 years, I can assure you that tomorrow morning when I first awaken, the first voice I hear will be a voice of protest. That voice will be distinctly the presence of indwelling sin appealing to me and seeking to persuade me to stay in bed. That voice never subsides. And that voice also negotiates, so that if I make an initial movement, that voice doesn’t subside and assume that that voice has lost. No. That voice continues to exert effort, and then presents to me various distractions.

The entire post is worth your time but I’d like to add a couple of suggestions as you fight daily to steal time away to focus on the cross.

  1. Set a designated time. Morning, evening or during your lunch break. Establish a routine
  2. Make a rule to avoid technology and literature until you’ve taken time to meditate on the gospel through the Scriptures. No radios, internet, television or newspapers until you’ve spent time in God’s Word.
  3. Wake up befor the chaos of the day is set in full motion. This may mean waking up before your children and spouse rise.
  4. Pray and ask God to give you a hunger for His truth as revealed in His Word.