Submit Our Time
“The Prophet Joseph told me to every morning dedicate myself to God” (L. John Nuttall, Diary, August 1881).
The first step of inviting the spirit of transformation is to offer a sacrifice born of our own free will and choice. To give ourselves to the Lord without being compelled. To step towards him in the daylight.
This free-will offering can happen every morning by choosing to wake earlier than our day demands, and come to God by first submitting our time to him (and our sleep).
As much as possible, if we yield our time and commitment to the prayer it will be a first step in submitting to his process and will.
The submission of time is a setting or priorities and seeking Him first. If He is going to reveal himself according to his “own time, and in his own way, and according to his own will[i],” then we must yield our time, our ways and our will to him.
Actively choosing to give him our time will immediately invite grace. It will invite the spirit to us because we have taken initiative to humble ourselves and begin to consecrate our time. It is the first step of drawing near unto him, and so it will draw him unto us.
When we choose to submit our time – and especially our mornings – to our Father in seasons of our life that are not motivated by difficulty and trial; when we consecrate time beyond the needs of our current concerns, the spirit comes to us because we seek to draw close to him by virtue of the word and not circumstance.
This prayer of initiation and consecration is very powerful. It invites the Lord not because of necessity, but because we are even willing to offer up our comfort and ease to his will. This initiates grace.
Even if we find our self in a time of trial and great need, perhaps in a state of being compelled to be humble, we can still submit our time beyond the need to draw close to him for the need at hand.
For example, if we consecrate our time in prayer on behalf of others while we are in a time of vexing trial and need we activate the same principle of drawing close to the Lord because of the goodness of the word and not because we are being compelled.
No matter what we circumstances in which we find ourselves, the Lord provides us an opportunity to be humbled by the word.
And so, the prayer of transformation often begins with a decision: is knowing the Lord and being made in his image worth waking up 10 minutes, 30 minutes, or an hour or two early in the morning?
When we initiate our own sacrifice of comfort and take a step towards him without being compelled, he takes 10 steps. I believe the heavens rejoice in these simple acts of coming to Christ.
And the submission of our time and comfort will prepare our hearts and invite the Lord to our presence to experience the powerful sequence of the prayer of transformation.