Thursday, February 11, 2016
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If you've listened to this program before, you might be familiar with the dog we had, Missy. She provided a wealth of stories for me throughout the years. She was our little, often spunky, black and white shiatsu. Oh, she wasn't always spunky, especially in the mornings. I'd often get up early before anyone else, and when I hit the kitchen there she was. A definitely "unspunky" Missy.
I usually found her sprawled out under this white desk we had in the kitchen. She was awake but that's about all. Her head and her eyes and her ears drooped and nothing I could say or do or offer could coax her out of her hiding place. But as soon as she heard any stirring upstairs where my youngest son was – her master – Missy suddenly came alive and she'd stand expectantly at the kitchen gate, wagging her tail.
Now, my day begins when the alarm goes off, but not Missy. No, her day began when she saw her master.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "The Jesus Way to Start Your Day."
Our word for today from the Word of God comes from the personal writings of a man God called the man after His own heart, David. Psalm 42:1-2 - "As the deer pants for streams of water so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, the living God. When can I go and meet with God?" See, David has this driving desire to get one on one time with God. It's like a thirst that demands to be quenched. It reminds me of that dog and what motivated her. She lived to be with her master. Her day didn't start until she had been with her master.
Now, we've been wired by our Heavenly Father to feel that same way about our relationship with Him. My day doesn't start until I've been with You, Master. If we really believe that then we've had a lot of days that have effectively never really gotten started. Right? We never really found time to meet with God did we? Actually, found time isn't how it works. We never really reserved time to be with our Master.
Now, what happens when you do get with Him? Well, David says later in this Psalm, "My tears have been my food day and night," and he says, "I pour out my soul." When you meet with God you empty out the real feelings in your soul, not so He can find out about them, He already knows, but so His power and love are turned loose on healing them.
And then there's hope for each new day. David says when he seeks the Lord (verse 5), "Why are you so downcast, O my soul?...Put your hope in God for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and my God." You see, pain gets recycled into praise. When you meet with your Master the anxiety is replaced with peace as you remember how big He is compared to what you're worrying about. You discover the Lord's leading for this new day like a dog finding out where his master is going so he can follow. A master launch of your day takes you to the cross with yesterday's sin to receive the mercies that are new every morning. And so you get an early spiritual shower and you start the day clean.
Maybe you've had too many days where you have sunk emotionally, relationally, spiritually. You're basically sleep-walking through the day, or like Missy you're just moping around with nothing to get moving for. You've started your day with Snapchat, Twitter or Netflix, or with a stressful "to do" list in your head, with people other than your master.
Instead, start with Him, talk to Him, listen to Him first, review verses about Him, fill up on music and praise about Him. Load up on Jesus in the launching moments of your day and keep a reserved time in your morning schedule to sit down and just be with Jesus, letting him show you His perspective on that day with His word. And that time has got to be the most non-negotiable part of your schedule. The one time in your day that cannot be canceled. The one time nobody else can have.
After all, even a dog knows it isn't much of a day without your master. Time with Jesus is what really starts and what really energizes your day!