In the Morning When I Rise…

My first conscious thought that morning at 4:30 was unsettling. Still in a fog, I tried to push “work” out of my mind and go back to sleep. I still had two glorious hours before my alarm would sound.

But instead of snoozing, I began to fret about the day ahead. I fretted about having to leave work for a medical test, about the procedure itself, and about a meeting after lunch for which I was unprepared. I finally swung my feet out of bed and sat up straight to fully contemplate my worries.

It was then that I stopped myself—and prayed, Oh God, help me to not be like this! My full-blown, early-morning worry sessions had become an unhealthy habit, and I knew something had to change.

morningrisejesus

I tried something different the next day—and the next and the next. When I woke up troubled and anxious, I prayed that His love would permeate my thoughts and engulf my soul. I consciously refocused my thoughts on the goodness of God and reminded myself: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never…end; they are new every morning.*

It didn’t feel natural, and it didn’t come easy. I had to make myself do this every single day.

As those winter mornings turned to spring mornings, I continued to pray in those hours before dawn: God, no matter what I face today, thank You for remaining faithful! Then one day I realized I had finally turned a corner—and was waking up most mornings at a normal time, rested and at peace.

Call me crazy, and good thing no one except my husband has to hear me, but there’s a song I sing to myself in the mornings now. I love the repetition of these words as I make my coffee and prepare for whatever God brings my way:

In the morning when I rise,
In 
the morning when I rise,
In 
the morning when I rise,
Give 
me Jesus.

Give me Jesus,
Give me Jesus,
You can have all this world,
Just give me Jesus.

If you need a new tune to run through your heart upon rising, too, this song is below. Watch out, though. If you get these words stuck in your head, it just might change your mornings (and drive your family a little crazy while you sing it all the time)!

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
Lamentations 3:22-23

 

*Morning-Rise graphic by jennakristine.com

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