God willing, it happens every day: You wake up. At that moment you have one of two choices. You can groan, roll over and say, "Just a few more minutes" or you can get up out of bed and offer your day to the Lord. This is how Blessed Jose Maria Escriva describes it, "The heroic minute: it is the time fixed for getting up. Without hesitation: a supernatural reflection and...up. The heroic minute: here you have a mortification that strengthens your will and does no harm to your body. If, with God's help, you conquer yourself, you will be well ahead for the rest of the day. It's so discouraging to find oneself beaten at the first skirmish." Again, this is something that sounds so simple, but how many times do you find yourself saying, "just a few more minutes". In fact, it happened to me today. Just 15 more minutes and I will still be on time. Unfortunately, it was actually an hour later when I woke up and then I was under the gun to get going. It seems to take so long to recover from that, too.
I have to say that my natural inclination is to stay up late at night and sleep in a little later. My husband is the exact opposite. Over the years, however, he has convinced me that it is far better to be up early and be ready to face the kids and the day prepared (prayers said, body showered and dressed!) than it is to be rolling into the kitchen at the same time as they are. I still miss staying up during those few hours after the kids go to bed and the whole house has that peaceful silence about it, but I have to agree that my day goes much smoother if I get up at my specified time and stick to my routine.
In addition to getting up at your specified time, without hesitation, Blessed Jose also recommends taking that moment to tell the Lord that you want to serve Him during the day. He says, "Renew your decision each morning with a very determined 'Serviam' - I will serve you, Lord. Renew your resolution not to give in, not to give way to laziness or idleness; to face up to your duties with greater hope and more optimism." We can then follow up this heroic moment with our Morning Offering which will dispose us to listen to the Holy Spirit and help us to heed the many inspirations and graces that the Lord sends us throughout the day.