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Morning People


Issue 146

You can tell those who are “morning people” the moment they arrive. You will know whether you are a morning person or not. I am not – although age seems to change that. For many people, one of the biggest challenges of their work is to cope with the morning: getting up, preparing for work and in a large number of cases commuting is a real challenge. This is the first hurdle, but there are many more. As the day proceeds, challenges arise, more hurdles appear and the demands increase and sometimes the day just implodes. At this point, whether you are a morning person or not, you are experiencing a bad day. If stress research is anything to go by, then you are in good company when you have your bad day. This, however, is not very comforting. Bad days are, by definition, unpleasant. The recipe for badness contains any of a massive number of ingredients: interruptions, mistakes, rows, ┬ámisunderstandings, overwork, underpayment, missed deadlines, boredom or crises swirl around the mixing bowl. On such days, you get home late, exhausted and disillusioned. Depending on your habits you may follow your bad day with a bad evening and a bad night’s sleep – waking up the next morning having sacrificed the morning after on the altar of the night before.

At this point, however, it is possible to discover that God has something of the morning person about him. The world is new and another chance emerges. Yesterday is in the past. Before you raise a cynical laugh (for which as a non-morning person I have a great deal of sympathy) or mock at the suggestion that things are better the next morning as nothing more than fairies dancing to birdsong, consider the thought processes of Jeremiah. Not known for his cheery nature, he had a reputation for not being a morning, afternoon or evening person.

Every day seemed full of sorrow for him, yet he was claiming in the middle of a national and personal disaster something deeply significant about the morning. He was living through a worse than bad day, when all seemed lost. Through failure, immorality and mistakes, he and his countrymen had brought disaster upon themselves. But he argued that he could have hope because the compassions or mercies of God never fail. In fact – and here is our point – they are new every morning.

Imagine a gift from a loved one arriving on your doorstep each day. A really useful gift that would help get you through the day. This is what Jeremiah has in mind.

We need God’s compassion and mercies because we mess up. We need his patience, kindness and strength because we blow up, foul up and give up. We need his mercy because we deliberately as well as accidentally lose our way. By the end of a bad day we feel we have run out of positive emotion and energy.

This is why we need a new supply every morning. Jeremiah recognised this but also realised that he needed to remind himself of his position so he says to himself, “the Lord is my portion, therefore I will wait for Him.” Jeremiah’s self-talk alerted him to feed on the soul food of God’s mercy and wait for him to supply him with his never-failing new every morning mercy. So if you’re having a bad day – tomorrow is coming.


Lamentations 3: 21-24

21 Yet this I call to mind

and therefore I have hope:

22 Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed,

for his compassions never fail.

23 They are new every morning;

great is your faithfulness.

24 I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion;

therefore I will wait for him.”

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Tags: disaster, hope, mercy, messy, morning, rescue, resources

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Geoff Shattock

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