Think of your life as a beautiful painting that you create a stroke at a time, day by day. Every painting needs a frame. Let’s imagine the frame as the way you start and end your day. Do you hit the ground running in the morning and keep running until you fall into bed at night exhausted? Or do you frame your day as the psalmist did in Psalm 92:2 - “It is good . . . to proclaim your (God’s) unfailing love in the morning, your faithfulness in the evening.”
Lysa TerKeurst, in her new book Uninvited, has a brilliant chapter called “The Enemy’s Plan Against You.” In that chapter she says, “. . . it’s crucial to watch what is influencing me and feeding my thoughts. A good question to ask myself is, where am I paying my attention? Specifically what am I paying attention to first thing in the morning? And what am I paying attention to right before I go to sleep? If I want God to be my focus, I must give Him my first thoughts. And if I want my mind to be at peace when I sleep I must keep my thoughts fixed on His promises at night . . .”
I have shared before that starting each day with God has been a struggle for me. It has taken years but spending my first part of each day in prayer, Bible study and journaling has finally become a daily habit for me (since September 1 – of this year – sheepish face). It is making a difference in my mood and perspective as well as creating a thirst in me for more of God and more of his word.
Scripture encourages us to start the day with God. Jesus, himself, modeled it. Mark 1:35 says, “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.”
In Psalm 5:3, David, the only man that God calls a man after His own heart, tells us, “In the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.” David goes on to say in Psalm 143:8, “Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life.”
God gives us fresh blessings and mercies each and every day. In God’s economy he never gives us stale blessings. Lamentations 3:22-23 tells us, “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”
If you already start your day with God – good for you! If not, what would you need to change to make this happen? My October 4 blog entry, “Start Your Day With God,” describes what that looked like for me.
As for the end of the day I most often spend it watching a 30 minute sitcom on TV or scrolling a favorite website like Etsy trying to relax. I do not know what it would look like to frame my day at each end with time spent with God. But I am willing to try.
Precious Father – Thank for wanting to spend time with us and for creating us for relationship with you. May we, like David, put out trust in you and be reminded every morning of your unfailing love. May we ask the way we should go each morning and may we entrust our lives to you each day. Amen.