Praying through the day

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Devotional Word for Monday, June 8, 2020

Psalm 92 gives us helpful insight on how to begin each day and how to end each day. Here’s what it says: It is good to give thanks to the Lord, and to sing praises to Your name, O Most High; to declare Your lovingkindness in the morning and Your faithfulness by night. [Psalm 92:1-2] Let’s examine this a little closer.

I’m struck by the declaration that it is good to give thanks to the Lord. It is good to sing praises to His name. I want to do good. That’s one of the foremost desires of my heart. I suspect the same is true for you. This first verse tells us how to do so: we need to direct ourselves to the Lord. This means not simply assuming He is with us, but turning our hearts and minds towards Him in a deliberate fashion. We need to do so with thanksgiving and praise. That’s all well and good, but how do I do this?

By declaring God’s lovingkindness in the morning. What does that mean? Lovingkindness means God’s steadfast love, His unwavering covenantal purpose to be present in the lives of His people. We should remember and reflect on that truth with declarations. Here’s what I mean.

Suppose you’re imagining just a normal sort of day. Then you might declare, Lord Jesus, I thank You that You’ll be with me today. I ask You to guide and protect me, so that I can honor You in all I do. A simple prayer like that is a good declaration of God’s lovingkindness.

What if you’re facing a horrible day, a day you know will include doing tasks you dislike, or being in adversarial situations, or having to deliver bad news to someone, or you just feel rotten and don’t look forward to the day? Perhaps a prayer like this: O God, I’m not looking forward to this day. But I must go forward, and I thank You that You will go before me and be with me. May Your grace give me the strength and fortitude to do all that is before me this day. 

What if this is a day you’re looking forward to, a day that has all the prospects for being great? Then, a declaration like this might fit: Almighty God, You’ve blessed me with Your bounty this day. Help me walk in humility and with great gratitude this day, for I know You’re the One who watches over me. 

You get the idea. Each morning purpose to give thanks to the Lord with an expectant attitude that He will guide you and protect you no matter what comes up.

In the evening it is good to declare God’s faithfulness. If it’s evening, then He has brought you through the day! Take time to look back over the day and see where you’ve been, what you’ve done, and how the Lord has been with you. Maybe He’s given you some blessed results, or He’s brought direction to your life, or it’s been a deep valley yet He was with you. Or, like most days, it was just an ordinary day and we thank Him for our heart beating, for the world He’s made, for our daily bread, and for a night’s rest that lies ahead. 

It’s good to give thanks to the Lord, and to sing praises to His name. May we do so daily.

Let’s pray: O God, we do give thanks to You, our hearts sing Your praise! You have been merciful to us, delivering us from evil, and providing for all our needs. Help our hearts be steadfast in Your ways, even as You are steadfast in Your love and care for us. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.