The Ponder Effect | What is my first thought in the mornings?
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What is my first thought
in the mornings?

What is my first action?

That thing that you think and do first thing, it sets the intention for your whole day, and bit by bit for your whole life. What is it you do? Do you reach for your phone? Do you jump to the mental checklist of all that has to be done? Do you roll over and resist waking? Do you think COFFEE or reach over and pat your partner or take in a huge new breath of life-giving air? Do you greet God?

I recently participated in a prayer study. During the first session, the leaders asked members of the group to share the prayers they had said as children. There were a lot of “Now I lay me” contributions and some “God is good, God is great.” One woman offered a beautiful little rhyme that has stuck with me:

Good Morning, Lord.
This is your day!
I am your child;
Show me the way.

I love how simple this is and yet how profound. So many of us have written about our struggles to relinquish control. So many of us have written about wrestling with surrender, trust and faith. So many of us have written about the importance of gratitude. And under all of this is a journey of discernment. The ongoing effort to determine how to live.

Here in these 15 words, which are super easy to remember and quick to recite, we have so much that can set us on a solid path for our day. We make God our first companion, greeting Him with joy and celebration. We give thanks for more time and give authority to His plan. We position ourselves as children in a way that feels to me so liberating—we don’t have to know all the answers, we don’t have to have it all figured out, we don’t have to sound smart, we don’t have to be “grown up,” only growing! And we ask for guidance. Simple, and profound, as that.

I try to make this short prayer my first thought. I have a sequence of things I like to do after that, which includes stretching, meditation, reading, and more prayer, but May and the onset of summer have disrupted that regimen mightily. If nothing else, I can still choose what I want those first thoughts to be. I can take advantage of that daily awakening.

What about you? What are your first thoughts? How do they serve or not serve you?

Share your thoughts [All posts are 100% anonymous]

11 Ponderings
  • Anonymous

    May 26, 2019 at 7:17 pm

    I love that prayer because although I am not quite awake without my coffee I too wake up grateful and with an expectant heart for the new day.

  • Anonymous

    May 27, 2019 at 5:34 am

    After feeding the dogs, the first thing I do every morning is make a ceremonial matcha tea. The ritual is very comforting. I try to be grateful in the mornings for my blessings and share some love for others too.

  • Anonymous

    May 27, 2019 at 7:41 am

    This Ponder topic couldn’t have been more fitting for my morning, one in which my first thoughts became dictated by others’ thoughts. Out of habit, I reached for my phone and saw a list of notifications––no matter how many mornings they greet me, I remain surprised at how these bubbled alerts stack up during midnight hours. Negative news, hurtful comments, and the day’s agenda points flashed at me. I realized that even in my effort to look at the time and nothing else, my eyes caught the notifications and my thoughts started their reeling.

    It is hard to pause and rewind first thoughts when they have been initiated by someone or something else. That is why this reminder of how powerful a simple prayer can be rings truer to my ears than ever this morning. I love that whispering to God can start with a 5-second phrase and yet reverberate like a metronome that beats beneath every other step and murmur of the day. Thanks for sharing this; much needed!

  • Anonymous

    May 28, 2019 at 9:05 am

    I LOVE this!!! To me, morning is the most powerful time of day. It sets the tone for my day in a way that is beyond me. And, it really is when I meet God. But, sometimes I choose to be the child and humbly show up for direction, and other times I choose to be the parent, and completely miss what’s being spoken into me. It’s a choice, and it’s a discipline. Like this said, May and summer have TOTALLY disrupted my morning humility. I’m ready to be reminded that I don’t have to be the parent all the time.

  • Anonymous

    May 28, 2019 at 9:35 am

    Confession. I first I roll over and resist waking. But I don’t consider that my first “real” action. Nor is fixing breakfast and giving my husband an “I love you” , a hug and a kiss as he goes out the door. What I consider my first real action is the quiet time that follows when I sit in my favorite chair looking out at a beautiful day, rain, shine or snow, and settle into my prayer meditation time. It always turns out to be more prayer than meditation. I can’t seem to do that “be still” business well. I find myself starting with prayers for everyone on my prayer list, moving to giving thanks for all the blessings heaped on our family. Then I try to ask for forgiveness, knowing that I have no real idea of where I need forgiveness. All this time I am talking, talking. And what I really wish is that God would talk to me.

  • Anonymous

    May 28, 2019 at 10:01 am

    Take a big breath in through my nose. All that oxygen gets me awake and going.

  • Anonymous

    May 28, 2019 at 10:24 am

    This prayer is the answer to prayers for the wonderful, disruptive mornings of summer. Thank you!

  • Anonymous

    May 29, 2019 at 9:03 pm

    After I get my coffee, I try to remember to say…….This is the day the Lord hath made, rejoice and be glad in it!

  • Anonymous

    May 30, 2019 at 7:16 am

    Morning is my favorite time of any day! Coffee,a quick scan of the days agenda and then the best part that I am fortunate to have the liberty to do, get back in bed!
    Read, pray, journal, be still. The difference when I do and do not have this start of the day is one of peace verses contentment.

  • Anonymous

    May 30, 2019 at 6:12 pm

    Well, almost everyday my first thought is “It’s too early!”; my alarm goes off at 5:30 when I’d like it to go off at 7:30. Prayer next, usually for strength and energy.

  • Anonymous

    August 10, 2020 at 12:13 pm

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