God tells us in our first reading this week that wisdom is something that is always waiting for us. For those who seek out wisdom will always find it:
“Resplendent and unfading is wisdom,
and she is readily perceived by those who love her,
and found by those who seek her.
She hastens to make herself known in anticipation of their desire;
Whoever watches for her at dawn shall not be disappointed,
for he shall find her sitting by his gate”
Admiral William H. McRaven gave the commencement address at the University of Texas a few years ago. What he told this crowd of excited graduates was that they should make their beds every morning, and that this would help them change the world. The idea is solid: make your bed, and you start with a feeling of accomplishment. This can lead to other accomplishments, starting you down a path to success for your day. And if your entire day falls apart, at least you return home to find one thing that you did right that day.
All people of faith struggle to find a way to open ourselves up to God’s presence. There are some days that we struggle to see God working in the world at all. This does not have to be true, and certainly won’t be if you allow God to open your eyes each morning. If the first words you speak are praising God, if the first words you read are from Sacred Scripture, how would you not be set on a different path for your day. The change that this brings to your life is one of perspective, a different mindset, a framing of events so that we truly see them. This is irreplaceable in the life of a Christian. And even if everything fell apart today, we return to the same place, alone with God to end our day where we started.
I bet that someone taught you to “say your prayers” when you were little, which is exactly what you should have learned to do. You were taught what we teach to children, a starting point, something for us to grow with. Hopefully this grew into something deeper and more personal. Your daily prayers should be more than “saying your prayers,” but they don’t have to be. If you need to begin again, start with the same simple prayers you used as a child. They will remind of God’s presence, and give you a place to start. Then you can begin to truly listen, for the wisdom and guidance God is waiting to give you.
The point is this: if you aren’t praying in the morning, start praying in the morning. It is the only time that you know you can give to God, before your day gets away from you. If you don’t make God THE priority, making your bed might be the high point of your day.