“Oh, how abundant is Your goodness, which You have stored up for those who fear You.” — Psalm 31:19 (ESV)
Start Your Day with the Best Thing
As Christians, we know we are supposed to start our day off with God. If you have been a believer for any length of time, you have likely been encouraged by a pastor, teacher, mentor or friend to spend time every morning in God’s presence. However, many of us have never been told why God wants us to spend time with Him in the morning. We’ve never discovered all God longs to do in the first moments of our days. We just carry the weight of knowing we should spend time alone with God.
God longs for your day to begin with the absolute best thing, and the best thing is His presence. If encountering God’s presence is the best part of your day, then you already know the impact it has made on you. For most of us, though, I am going to bet that we’ve yet to fully discover how great spending time with God is. Take a look at your life. How often do you spend time with God? This isn’t a report card where the people with the most consistent quiet times get a gold star. Be real with yourself. This is for your benefit. Take a moment and assess how often you actually spend time meeting with God.
You see, we will only ever consistently do that which we want to do, especially in our free time. We might have to go to work. We might feel obligated to people or practices. But with our personal time, our wants will always win out over our obligations. For many years I tried to spend time with God out of obligation. As a result, I hardly ever did it. It wasn’t until I encountered the incredible love and peace inherent in God’s presence that I began to actually desire to spend time with Him. Once I felt the satisfaction only His presence can bring, I began to crave time with Him out of a need to satisfy my longings for love, purpose and relationship. I discovered that my time spent with God was the absolute best part of my day.
Psalm 16:11 says, “You make known to me the path of life; in Your presence there is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore” (ESV). And Psalm 84:1-2 says, “How lovely is Your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts! My soul longs, yes, faints for the courts of the Lord; my heart and flesh sing for joy to the living God.” I can attest that consistently receiving a revelation of God’s love has been the single most transformative part of my life. The days I don’t start with the best thing, being in His presence, are my worst days by far. His presence ignites me with passion, love, purpose and a sense of belonging that nothing else can give.
Wherever you are in relation to God today, do you want to know Him more? Do you want a deeper revelation of His goodness and love? Take time to open your heart to God and allow Him to satisfy your eternal need for communion with the Father. Allow Him to fill you with His presence, that you might experience the reality of His love. And let a true, transformative encounter with the living God fill you with a greater hunger to consistently encounter God in the first moments of each day.
May your time spent today encountering God in guided prayer be filled with the “fullness of joy” (Psalm 16:11, ESV).
— Craig Denison, First15
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