I’m not a morning person. The thought of waking up before the world starts moving is not what I am drawn to. I used to think the ‘holier people’ would get up in the low light of dawn to cry out to God for hours before the day has started (and some people do that which is great) but it’s important to realise that everyone was not made the same and it’s okay for people to pray in a way that works for them. Whenever your day starts it should start right though. No this isn’t an advert for a breakfast cereal bar but I’m talking about starting when you wake with prayer.
Next to my bed is this light box that displays the slogan ‘Keep Calm & Pray’. Before any of the day’s challenges or activities have started this quick message reminds me that whatever happens God ultimately holds the day in his hands and that worrying about it won’t make any difference. However keeping calm and knowing God’s in control of it is key to remember.
‘In the morning, Lord you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.’ (Psalm 5:3 NIV)
So I may not get up exceptionally early but personally I find praying as I get ready for my day is a great way to get it started. Whether that’s in the shower, walking to work or sipping that first drink of the day (personally it’s a cup of tea), expect in faith that God will hear your requests and go with you on your day! You may even ask him to bless others in their day or ask God for opportunity to use you for his glory.
Find a quiet, secluded place so you won’t be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace. (Matthew 6:6 MSG)
Grabbing a quiet moment in your day may be easier said than done. Life’s noise can often not leave us alone, but take those quiet moments to say a prayer to God and He can fill you with his Grace. Remember to be simple about it though, God doesn’t want us to come to him tongue tied and over complicating our words to him. It’s as simple as chatting to your best mate. In basic terms be yourself.
As I end my day just before I drift off I look at my light box (which is the only thing still lit in the room at this point) reminding me to once again ‘Keep Calm & Pray’. I remember to thank God for the good things that went well during the day and to ask that he help me to continue to rely on him for the things that maybe I didn’t get quite right today but have another chance to try again tomorrow. Book-ending each end of the day with prayer even if it is short and simple helps you to remember you are always wrapped in the Father’s love and can always talk to him. Perhaps you might want to try having a reminder around your bedside to wrap your day in prayer.
Prayer was never meant to complicated, it was meant to be simple, the Bible tells us so!
Lastly if you don’t know what to pray the easiest thing to do is look at the way Jesus taught us to pray as we have looked at a few times recently in church! My personal favourite version as translated in The Message:
‘Our Father in heaven,
Reveal who you are.
Set the world right;
Do what’s best—
as above, so below.
Keep us alive with three square meals.
Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others.
Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil.
You’re in charge!
You can do anything you want!
You’re ablaze in beauty!
Yes. Yes. Yes.’
Written by Luke Middleton