My Monday Morning Cup | Living a Life Pleasing to the Lord Begins with Prayer

I wake up fairly early, around 4 a.m. When I first arise, I’ve learned it is good for me to pray before my feet hit the floor. It sets the tone for the day. There are a couple of things I like to pray, like the Serenity Prayer and the Lord’s Prayer. Sometimes, I like to pray certain verses like Psalm 19:14 to orient my course for the day that lies ahead. Through experience, I discovered that when I take time to pray before my feet hit the ground my day goes better.

Praying first thing in the morning helps me choose how I respond to the people in the world around me. Prayer guides me in my reaction to what’s happening in the creation surrounding me. If I walk too far ahead or fall too far behind in my walk with the Lord then like the lost or stray sheep I can soon find myself in trouble. Praying in the morning as I arise helps me get in sync with God.

May these words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Psalm 19:14

Psalm 19, a wisdom Psalm written by David, shows us that he viewed his thoughts and words as sacrificial offerings of worship to the Lord. Pause. Think about that a minute. Let it sink in.

Your thoughts and your words are sacrificial offerings of worship to God.

Our thoughts and words are not aimless or mindless. Our thoughts shape our words and fuel our actions. My sweet Terri says that words are like bullets. Once they leave your mind and exit your mouth, you can’t take them back.

My thoughts guide how I see you. Do I see you like God sees you? My words may be the only Jesus my neighbor sees.

Yes, that person who just acted like my best friend didn’t get the answer they were looking for so I see them go directly to ask someone the same question they asked me. Disrespectful for sure. What am I a human slot machine? You don’t get out of me what you want so you walk off and go on to the next shiny thing hoping to maneuver around me and manipulate someone to get what you want.

Fueled by prayer, guided by the Holy Spirit, I can respond with grace and kindness in the face of adversity as someone is expressing their displeasure with me. You see, how someone else is acting or behaving doesn’t determine how I respond. How I view God informs my response.

I can choose my response.

I can worship the Lord like Abel or I can worship God like Cain.

Now Abel kept flocks, and Cain worked the soil. In the course of time Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil as an offering to the Lord. And Abel also brought an offering—fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock. The Lord looked with favor on Abel and his offering, but on Cain and his offering he did not look with favor. So Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast.

Genesis 4:3-5

With the power of God, I can love the unlovable. Because of Jesus, I can show grace to others because Jesus first showed grace to me in giving His all while I was still a sinner separated from God. With the Holy Spirit dwelling inside me, I can demonstrate God’s love to you as the Holy Spirit powers the love of God in me.

My thoughts and words are shaped and formed by God, the Most High, not by my natural self. As a believer, I seek first what pleases the Lord. I recognize that my thoughs and words are like first fruits of sacrificial offerings that I am presenting to the Lord as part of my worship. As a believer, my thoughts and words represent WHO I profess to believe in. We are, afterall, AMBASSADORS of CHRIST. Our thoughts and words are either drawing us and others closer to the Cross or they are sepearting us and them from Jesus.

My prayer for you and me today is that we would commit our thoughts and words to Jesus first thing as we arise and before we go out into the battlefield to serve as the hands and feet of Christ. For me, living a life pleasing to the Lord begins with prayer early in the morning. It sets the tone for the day.

May the Lord shine His favor on you today and the week that lies ahead.


The Devotional Guy™

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  1. My thoughts and words are sacrificial gifts to God. I’d never thought about it like that before, Rainer. Thank you, brother! May God continue to bless your ministry with the homeless population in Dallas.

    Liked by 1 person

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