Monday Meditations

His Mercies are New Every Morning

I once heard the following prayer: “Lord, I’ve been doing really good. I haven’t sinned yet today, kicked the dog, or yelled at my spouse. But, Lord, I’m really going to need your help, because… I’m about to get out of bed.”

There are many ways to start your day. Sometimes we can feel an undue burden about the “right” way, especially if we don’t start with prayer and devotions.

I’ve heard that morning devotions are a modern luxury. A hundred years ago, you probably wouldn’t have had time to rest with coffee as you woke. The roosters would have complained that the cows needed to be let out before the sun finished rising. A few generations before that, printed material was less common. And a few generations before that, not everyone was literate.

Still, there’s a sense that you’re a little more like Jesus if you read the Bible before the sun comes up.

As I start this post, it’s in the wee hours of the morning. I’m contemplating if 4 a.m. is really better than 5 a.m.

It’s true, sometimes carving out routine to spend in study, prayer or meditation is a spiritual discipline of submission. But sometimes, a little more rest may be the spiritual discipline you need.

It’s five a.m. somewhere
I would have preferred to start this post at 9 a.m. But worry, age, and digestion sometimes commandeer sleep schedules. Then, out of sync circadian rhythms can render mornings useless. Possibly, it’s children and pets instead of roosters and cows crowing at your dawn.

Still, his mercies are new every morning.

There is something special about when we sanction time from our “first fruits” or abundance, as opposed to leftovers or a last resort. It can be meaningful what you choose to do first, when you have your choice of opportunities and demands.

But I think the most important thing about mornings is the practice of starting over with a renewed source. There is something lovely about new days, weeks, seasons, and beginnings.

Sometimes you need a fresh start in writing.

His mercies are new each morning is also an invitation to not rely on past successes or failures. The Israelites were told to only gather manna enough for one day as a practice of relying daily on God. The point is to come for renewal.

We are not defined by yesterday’s writing. Good or bad. (Although royalty checks are nice and bad reviews are not.)

I say celebrate that dependence, and that ability to start over. Be thankful that you aren’t enough. Come again to meet your Lord for fresh renewal. Whatever time of the day works best for you.

About this post:

Beliefs represented by individual authors are not necessarily shared by all members of ICW.


  • Hilarey Johnson

    Hilarey Johnson grew up hearing that she would be a good student if she could get her head out of the clouds. Her daydreaming still makes it possible to get lost driving anywhere. She loves characters with a hidden or unknown worth who rise up to claim their identity. She writes redemptive stories from Idaho and travels in the Pacific Northwest with her husband. Someday Hilarey hopes to time travel. She is the author of Breaking Bonds, and Dance of the Crane fiction series. She has written books and articles for Guideposts, Brio Magazine, Christian Living Magazine, local news papers such as the Times-News, North Lake Tahoe Bonanza and others. She blogs weekly about "Intimacy with God for the Over-Churched" at Hilarey Johnson is the current President of ICW.

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