Anyone else a runner? I was visiting with a friend the other day about running and finding my stride. I have had three and a half months off from running due to a couple of stress fractures in my left foot along with some damaged nerves. YUCK. It hasn’t been an easy or fun process that’s for sure, but I am just now able to start running a little bit. The first week I was allowed to run a half mile each day. Seriously. A half mile? You can’t even find your stride in a half mile! Or so I thought… but what I have found is God using it to teach me about really finding my stride.
When I get up in the morning my mind automatically goes from low to high gear. It doesn’t matter if I am still laying in bed (which doesn’t happen often with little boys who are early risers) or like most of my mornings while I am following one or both of them down the hallway towards the kitchen. And my coffee pot. My mind automatically starts sorting and categorizing the day, even without me prompting it to. It tends to categorize the items of the day into a list:
- coffee, snuggle time, breakfast
- chores, vitamins, get everyone dressed
- preschool, bible school, home day
- outside errands such as the bank, the post office, grocery store, etc
- dinner plan and prep
- snacks, lunch, down time (hopeful for an hour)
- ride horses, clean pens, chores
- dinner, baths, bed
And by the time I hit the start button on my coffee pot my mind has gone from 0 to 100 mph and mapped out my entire day. I have found over the last couple of weeks that I don’t even have to prompt it anymore. It just seems to run off on its own. Anyone else’s mind work like this? I find that I am exhausted (mentally) before I have even had my first cup of coffee. Conquered by my own thoughts…
But, what if I changed one small thing? What if first thing in the morning I started by setting my mind on God? On His love? On His goodness? What if I started my day with a simple statement of praise instead of my to-do list?
~Father thank you for today. I praise you that your mercies are new every morning. (Lam 3:23)
~Father thank you that you are my rock and my salvation. My soul will find rest today in you alone. (Psalm 62:1,2,5)
~Father thank you for your love. You are good, the source of good; train me in your goodness. (Psalm 119:68)
~Father thank you for your promises. My trust and confident hope is placed in you. (Hebrews 2:13)
And from there a simple statement to turn over my day to Him, for His purpose, to walk out His will.
~Father guide my steps, my hands, and the words of my mouth. Help me to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit today.
I know that retraining the mind is NOT an easy task… but what if we committed to this one thing? One small change in our mornings that over time will make a HUGE difference in our lives. Changing what we focus on first thing in the morning can and will set our attitude right for the day. And if we can win the battle in our mind and our attitude first thing in the morning, we set ourselves up to have a great day.
I believe that starting the day with our focus and our eyes on God puts us in position to find our stride for the day. Because I believe that I find my stride when it is in sync with His stride.