September 11th Devotion

How to Embrace a New Day
By Aaron D’Anthony Brown

“Because of the Lord’s faithful love we do not perish, for his mercies never end. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness!” (Lamentations 3:22-23)

Attitude Begins in the Morning
On certain days, waking up in the morning feels like one of two things - a blessing or a curse. Some of us see a blessing in living another day, while others aren’t quite satisfied with the life they’re living. What’s true in both scenarios is that the morning often sets the tone for the entire day. A grumpy mood can sit with you for hours to come, while a cheerful smile could infect everyone you come across.

As Christians, the mindset we should strive for is obvious. Without question, this pivotal point of the day doesn’t always come about ideally. Some mornings feel dreary, others pointless. Then there are mornings when stress makes you want to stay in bed and hit snooze forever. If we are to embrace each new day, we can’t get stuck on the troubles of yesterday or any worries about the future. Instead, we should use these practical steps to wake up in the morning and embrace what’s to come.

Intersecting Faith and Life:
Give Thanks
One way to embrace the new day is to say, “Thank you.” Thank you to God for your continued breath in your lungs and for the sun rising above your head again. Thank you because a new morning means His mercies are renewed. Thank you because a new day is another step toward whatever God has planned for you.

We should extend a similar courtesy to our loved ones, thanking them for being in our lives and for what they do. Gratitude has a way of uplifting those being thanked while also raising our spirits too. See how long that morning frown lasts when you keep uttering the words, thank you.

Make a Plan
If you have trouble embracing a new day because of future fears or past troubles, then make a plan. Taking a strategic approach to the day will help you make the most of the new while minimizing the old. If you’ve ever been kicked out of the home or lost a job, the impact of sudden change can be monumental. Yet, even if the day isn’t ideal, you can make the most of what you do have by setting a plan in place. Spend time with God. Connect with others. Figure out what would be both holy and beneficial to your Christian walk.

Let Go
One bad habit that gets us into trouble is trying to enter a new day while still clinging to the past. God’s mercies are new every morning, yet our mercies are often not. We bring into the new day bitterness and unforgiveness from the day before. If we cling to the past, then the past will follow us. Only by letting go will we be able to embrace a new day wholeheartedly.

Connect with Someone
Since the very first human He created, God already determined that man being alone is not a good thing (Genesis 2:18). This doesn’t mean alone time or solitude are bad - Jesus sought solitude - however, we should still find time to connect with other people, including fellow believers. Connecting with others allows us to help them remain strong in the faith and reminds us of truth as well. Sometimes we get to share the Gospel with nonbelievers, and sometimes we simply get to enjoy the company of another human being.

Altruism has a way of making those we serve feel good, and us too. Moreover, when we place our focus on serving someone, we take the focus off ourselves. This is especially helpful if you wake up in the morning tempted by thoughts of anxiety, doubt, and addiction. By thinking less of ourselves and more about God and others, our perspective changes. The troubles we experience begin to have less weight.

If you want to experience God’s presence in your day, there’s no way you can avoid praying. Prayer is our way of talking to God, bringing to the throne all the things big and all the things small that are on our hearts. God is able and willing to listen, we simply have to be willing to share.

No one denies that a new day can be intimidating. An impending presentation, childbirth, and confrontation are all natural reasons to not exactly feel at ease. However, we can find perfect peace when we place our full trust in God. He’s given us the new day. He’s willing to help us tackle it.
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