Cease to be a; cease to be b; cease to c one with another; cease to d longer than is needful; retire to thy bed early, that ye may not be weary; arise early, that your bodies and your minds may be e. –Doctrine & Covenants 124: 88
Getting things done in the morning creates so much more time in your day because things are already done when you or the kids get home from work or school or play. Have you ever risen just before sunrise and gone outside to listen to the world? There’s more of a peaceful silence in the hours just before the world fully awakens. The Lord promises us health and bounty when we awake early to work hard in our day.
Invigorate means ‘to impart vigor, strength, or vitality to.’ Could you use more strength and vitality? Certainly. Here’s a few ways you can do so.
- put your clothes out for the next day before you retire, it saves time that is wasted trying to decide in the morning when your brain is foggy
- if you want to hop out of bed to exercise, sleep in your workout clothes; they’re pretty comfortable anyway
- set your alarm for at least 15 to 30 minutes before your children wakeup, take care of yourself first
- stretching is one of the best things we can do to iron out the kinks from sleeping
- have your lunches and snacks already made the night before so you’re not hurrying through the morning trying to make them
- keep your makeup and/or toiletries at work or in your bag so you can put them on at work during a restroom stop, you’ll do it quicker than at home
- listen to your favorite speaker or book as you drive, it freshens the mind
- ALWAYS eat breakfast at home, it’s healthier, you can visit with the kids before school, or catch up on your scripture study
- tidy up before you leave, then you’re less likely to come home to as big a mess
What helps you in the morning?
Scripture reading is so important for us to daily refocus our mindset on the eternal perspective driving our actions. But if you’re like me and you wake up at 5 am in order to hash out a day’s work, it can be difficult to get in that scripture study.
May I recommend a solution? I get daily emails from Latter-Day Light on a daily basis with a short little devotional. They include a scripture and a matching prophetic quote.
Now, I do not suggest this as a complete substitution of your true scripture study or daily reading with family; those are still far more important. However, getting started on a spiritual thought each day helps us to keep that eternal focus throughout the day. Elder L. Tom Perry of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles stated:
“The discipline of following a scripture-study plan of learning the gospel [is] a wonderful, rewarding experience. The knowledge of the teachings of the scriptures [will] unfold in a glorious way through individual study. . . . Our minds [are] sharpened as we followed the daily practice of individual and companion study. The practice [brings] us closer together as companions and increase[s] our understanding of the doctrines of the kingdom.”
Have you seen that analogy with the mason jar, the apples, and the popcorn? I remember seeing it in Sunday school. The mason jar is the time in your day. The apples are the things we have been admonished to do daily and that are the most important things for ourselves and our families. The popcorn represent all the other little things that we want and like to do, but aren’t necessities. Well, if we fill our mason jar with all the popcorn before the apples, we can’t fit the apples into the jar. But if we put in the apples first, then all the popcorn can fit in around them.
This applies to more than just scripture study, I know. But it’s a good start for someone who’s only “eating” popcorn.
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So while I was looking for a nice image for this post, I came across the most fantastic idea: apple pies in jars! This is the most creative thing! I saw that and thought: I have all these baby food jars at home now, sitting empty, taking up space in my cupboard……and my husband always wants some sorts of sweets available…I’m gonna try this. Then I thought about trying little mini cobblers in there too because they’re much easier to make. So I found these little recipe ideas here.
Try it and have fun.