“Jesus said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.'” Matthew 19:14
There’s something magical about the early morning hours for me.
Tiptoeing through the dark to make coffee, cracking open God’s Word, and getting my head and heart in the right place before the day begins, is so special. But my 18 month-old-son, Benjamin, also loves to get up at this time; he doesn’t like to miss anything! Even when I wake up extra early to get time alone with Jesus, he wakes up early too!
My solution to having my personal early morning time with the Lord was to buy a Fun Box.
After a particularly early morning with Benjamin this past weekend, I loaded up the boys to head to the Crazy Store (Dollar Store here in Cape Town, South Africa), and bought a little Fun Box and filled it with inexpensive picture books, race cars, and stacking cups.
In the early mornings when Benjamin is ready to party when his mama wants to worship, I bring the Fun Box to his crib. He only plays with the Fun Box when it’s time for quiet play. I turn on a dim light and let him play while I sit in a chair across the room to have my own quiet time. He often looks over and checks in on me. He sees me reading or singing, and I smile at him and tell him I’m praising the Lord. He has even started to put his arms up in the air to show he understands “praise the Lord”.
We’ve had a few lovely, long (30 minute) mornings this way, and a few that have only been 5 or 10 minutes. Although I sometimes crave long, quiet morning hours to myself, I am choosing to believe something eternal is being instilled in Benjamin and in myself during these morning Fun Box hours.
I want my children to look back one day and remember playing with a Fun Box while their mom worshiped. I want their hearts to know – even before their minds do – that Mom’s strength comes from Christ alone. I want Scripture-based songs to be the soundtrack to their childhood play and to pour out of their lips when they’re not even thinking about it. We are starting one early morning at a time!