I am what you would call a morning person. I always have been. Most of the time it doesn't matter what time I go to bed, I still wake up at about the same time...early! My Dad says when I was a kid I was like a vampire. At a certain time every evening (usually not too late) I would shut down almost instantly. Then next morning I would pop out of a deep sleep, abruptly open my eyes, and hop out of bed with a bright smile. Well, things run just a bit slower now, but I still enjoy the freshness of a brand new morning. I love it when the dew (in our case now frost) is still on the ground. I love waking up just in time to awaken the dawn as David writes in the Psalms. "Sleeping in" for me is mostly not an option or it means sleeping until just after the sun rises. Knowing the day has begun motivates me to get out of bed before I miss too much of it!
I have learned over the years of being an early riser to appreciate each day thoroughly. I am at an age now (not over the hill but no longer at the bottom looking up) that each day has more value than when I was younger. At some point in my middle-aged years I realized the day that just ended was gone forever! Each day passes like a grain of sand that falls through the hour glass. When it passes...it is through...and there are only so many left. Our life is like that. Today will never come again. Yesterday is gone. We can definitely prepare for tomorrow, but when tomorrow becomes today we must make the most of it.
What can I do today that will impact tomorrow in a positive way? What can I give my children today, that they will remember for the rest of their lives? Is arguing with those I love so important that I'm willing to purchase it with time I'll never get back? Ephesians 4: 26 says, "Be angry, and yet do not sin; so do not let the sun go down on your anger." I know now Paul was not only encouraging us NOT to give an opportunity to the devil. He was also telling us that when the sun goes down the day has ended. And that day, spent in anger toward someone, is gone forever.
Most of us look at the end of our lives as final. But even from a natural perspective what we do today has an effect on people long after we are gone. In addition, what we do today has an incredible eternal effect on ourselves! That's why I believe Paul also writes that we should "redeem" the time because the days are evil. It's quite easy to get involved in evil that has negative effects on our families and ourselves. But that evil also has an effect on us eternally. It takes a firm commitment and an appreciation of today's breath of life to redeem our time.
Finally let me encourage you to take a break. Stop...take a deep breath. Look around at the day happening around you. Slow time down a bit by enjoying the beauty of the day. Let me emphasize once again that every second that passes by is gone forever, and you've only got so many left.
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