I have been trying to find my way into a regular morning spiritual practice for a long time. Over the years it has proven to be anything but regular, taking on many different shapes. I have sneaked out from my overfull house to settle myself on an old towel among the plants on our back deck. I have chanted prayers in the car on the way to work, back from school drop-off, or headed to the pool. I have snuck a whisper of prayer into a quick shower before the Zoom I am late for. I have had the luxury of a long prayerful yoga session in the garden. I have sat on my favorite stump overlooking the canyon of the regional park just up the hill, listening to the birds and the wind and the children.
More recently I have been enjoying breakfast with God two days a week. Those are the days that I commute one hour to the synagogue where I work, arriving around 8am. When I first returned to working in the building after the pandemic, I tried to do a little prayer in my office. I lit a candle, rotated my chair to face away from my desk, and set the timer on my meditation app, ready for some silence and morning gratitude. After 5 or 10 or 15 minutes, I would pivot back, blow out the candle, and dig into breakfast and the morning’s emails. It was efficient but not that satisfying. In that space, the tasks of the day were nipping at my brain, nudging me to get started already.
So one day, I migrated upstairs to the empty sanctuary. And I brought my tea. There I could pull up any chair, or find a spot on the floor, and breathe into the open holy space. Before long I brought breakfast with my tea, and my meditation timer, and my prayers, and blended them into a new morning ritual of breakfast with God. Some days there’s a lot of silence, or singing, a little bit of movement. Other days there’s really just breakfast and the soothing comfort of being in the quiet company of an old friend.