daily devotional

Every day of your life has brought you to this day. And this day, the very one you woke up to was known by your Creator before you took your first breath. For me, that first breath was 16,233 days ago and all those days has brought me to today, right here and right now.

Have you noticed how easy it is to get caught up in concern over the future right now? Perhaps more than ever before, our thoughts drift to concern of what’s coming and worry of what will be. But the question is, what happens to this day when we’re worried about tomorrow?

What happens to the opportunities of today when we’re focused on the uncertainty of tomorrow? What happens to the blessings of today when we’re stressed about next week? What happens to the provision of today when we’re dwelling on what was lost yesterday? What is happening to today?

Answer: WASTED

Psalm 90:12 “Teach us to number our days and recognize how few they are; help us to spend them as we should.” (The Living Bible)

Today has a number. A number that will never come again for you. With this numbered day, come numbered opportunities, numbered blessings, and numbered provisions. They are specific. Specifically allotted for this day of life. Arriving for you for this specific day are opportunities, blessings and provisions.

But when you mope, when you stew, when you wallow, when you worry, when you fret, when you stress, when you dwell, the allotment for today is missed and it’s not guaranteed for offering again tomorrow.

Teach us to number our days. What does this mean? This means identify each day as an individual, stand alone, one-in-a-lifetime opportunity with unique provisions and astounding blessings. And when we identify today as such, we recognize it’s value and we wouldn’t dare want to waste it. For when we learn to number our days, we will start spending them as we should.

So, what is your number today? Go ahead and look it up real quick on www.daysold.com (Pause me now and just come back.)

So here I am with my 16,233rd day of life, and you with your specific day of life. Now, how can we spend this one as we should?

Here are 3 suggestions for spending today as we should:

1. Be Intentional.

Ephesians 5: 15-16 “Be very careful, then, how you live— making the most of every opportunity.”

Look at today as the miracle it is and live it as such. Be in such wonder and awe over the magnificent work of God to bring us to this exact day of life that fear and worry is crowded out.

What have you lived through to get to today? What have you already survived? What have you overcome? Think about it, that was all to bring you to this day, this exact number of days. And how you live this day builds your tomorrows.

What if this day were that important?
What if the attitude and actions of today determine the offerings of tomorrow?
What if what God has given you today is only for today? Just today. Wouldn’t you seize that opportunity? Wouldn’t you savor that blessing?

This is living intentionally.

2. Respond instead of React.

Galatians 5:22 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”

How much of this has been running around in your house on quarantine? Running a little short on that patience? Has gentleness been taken out like yesterday’s garbage? Have you been reacting to what is around you instead of responding with what is in you?

This scripture says when God’s spirit lives within you, it naturally creates love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. It’s IN you. Maybe not around you, but IN you. Let us stop reacting to what is around us and start responding with what is in us.

When I was raising teens I truly began to understand the difference between reacting and responding. Reacting looked like me flipping out, morphing into crazy yelling mom with angry eyebrows. And let me tell you, that was hardly ever effective.

I learned responding usually involved me taking a breath (maybe even a hot minute to remember I was dealing with brains not yet fully developed and saturated in hormones) before I spoke. The result was a calmer and more effective mom whose words actually cut through the chaos instead of creating more.

This is responding instead of reacting.

3. Choose your thoughts.

2 Corinthians 10:5 “We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”

Your thoughts are the source of either your fears or your faith. The very things you think create your peace or your anxiety.

Scripture tells us to take every single thought captive, that means THINK ABOUT WHAT YOU’RE THINKING. What affect is this thought having? What good is this thought? Is this serving me or harming me? Is this thought even grounded in truth or is this thought the result of pure nonsense and assumption?

Philippians 4:8 gives us a clear list of requirements for our thoughts. If it is:

Worthy of Praise

… then think about it. If it’s not, then change your mind! We have that power through Christ Jesus. The power to change our mind and think about specific things.

What have you been thinking about? If you’re filled with anxiety, you’ve been thinking anxious thoughts. If you’re depressed, you’ve been thinking depressed thoughts. If you’re hopeful, you’ve been thinking hopeful thoughts. If you’re calm, you’ve been thinking peaceful thoughts.

Make your thoughts obedient today. This is choosing your thoughts.

There’s a little beauty I mentor who has stolen my heart. Her name is Katie and although she’s a little too old for my boy, I’ve decided she would be an awesome daughter-in-law. Even in her 20’s Katie gets it. She’s numbering her days. She’s living intentionally. She’s responding instead of reacting. And she’s choosing her thoughts. How do I know? She tagged me in her instagram post that said:

My 10,259 & 10,260th days of life. What followed were her highlights from those 2 days.

Highlights. The things she wanted to remember. Simple things like Facetiming family and friends, playing a game, going for a run, and enjoying the beauty of the snow.

This is what it looks like to live intentionally, to respond instead of react, and to choose your thoughts.

Here it is … the perfect example.

So what if we did the same today? What if we numbered today, then made a list of highlights from this day. Things we most want to remember about how we lived this exact day.

Every day of your entire life has brought you to today. How can you spend this day as you should?

Intentional Actions
Responding instead of Reacting
Chosen Thoughts

How about a running list of highlights as you live this day well?