It’s 5:30 a.m., and I’m groggy, grumpy, and unrested. I’ve only had about four or five hours of sleep, and not getting more was completely my fault. I jump into my car about an hour later with my roommate to go teach at the school where we both work. I typically try to start a conversation with him to get the day going, but for some reason, I essentially ignore him instead. This was the first sign of how my day would go.

While teaching, my energy is abysmal, so I just run through the motions, giving a lackluster effort. At my next job, I do everything I can to avoid anything that would inconvenience me or make me work harder than I wanted to. So I crack jokes, walk around to look busy, then make an excuse as to why I have to leave early for the day. I hop back into my car, arrive home, situate myself in my favorite spot on the couch and try to relax. My other roommate walks through the door, and I passively wave at him. He begins speaking to me, and I’m instantly annoyed. I give short answers, reach for my phone, and look as uninterested as I possibly can. It works, and he retreats to his room.

I then begin to run through my nighttime routine of reading, praying, and lighting a candle as a way to remember that the aroma of God is sweet, and that He lights our path for all our days. Yet, in the midst of this, I realize I haven’t spoken to God a single time today. I didn’t ask for God to give me energy when I knew I was tired. I simply allowed my mind to continue on a cycle of selfishness, self-reliance, and harshness toward others.

Not only did I neglect to remind myself of the truth, I neglected to practice the very truth I believed. Maybe you’re like me and think you have to have the exact right words before you come to the creator of Heaven and earth, but that is not what God desires. God desires for us to be with Him, delight in Him, rest in Him, listen to Him and have Him be the foundation for the rest of our lives. A simple prayer of, “God, I didn’t sleep well and have a long day ahead of me. I have work, friends and family I need to check on, so would you give me the energy to do what I need today? And most of all, would you be with me today?” Because a life void of prayer is a life void of true joy.

Who else is able to be our refuge? (Psalm 46). Who else is able to provide rest for our souls? (Matthew 11). Who else can cleanse us and make us pure? (1 John 1:9). When you and I don’t come to the Father in prayer, we miss out on so much of what God has to offer. Our souls begin to lose their sense of what it means to be one with the Father. We lose what it means to actively pursue God instead of trying not to sin. We lose sight of what it means to simply love Jesus for all of who He is. So what will you do today to pursue God and live in His presence? It could be going to sleep earlier so you can enjoy conversation with Him in the morning. It could be creating a list of all the ways you’re grateful for God or memorizing scriptures that remind you of exactly who He is. May these words be a nourishment to your soul and remind you that God is true, good, and beautiful in all His ways. Blessings.