What are the first thoughts that come to mind when you wake up? Here’s a multiple-choice quiz:
- It’s morning again.
- My to-do list is a mile long; I don’t know where to begin.
- Good morning, Lord. Thank You for the gift of a new day.
Our thoughts shape our beliefs which in turn influence our behaviors.
“For as he thinks in his heart, so is he,” says Proverbs 23:7 (NKJV). If we groan about morning and complain about having to get up early, our bodies will feel sluggish. A dismal attitude will color everything we do and everybody in our path. We start sounding like Eeyore of Winnie the Pooh fame.
If we focus immediately on the workload facing us, we’ll feel overwhelmed, overworked, and underappreciated. Our bodies will start releasing stress hormones that send us into a fight, flight, or freeze response.
If, however, we train our minds to go to a place of gratitude, our bodies will respond by releasing hormones related to pleasure and contentment. Our day assumes a tone of joy and anticipation.
This isn’t just a teaching about the power of positive thinking. This is a biblical principle that proves true. The thoughts we habitually entertain—and that we train our minds to think when we wake up—really do make a difference.
God created our brains, and He knows how we function best.
That’s why He tells us how to think: “And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise” (Philippians 4:8 NLT).
So, how can we train our morning thoughts to measure up to the description in Philippians? Here are three suggestions:
- Think on all things true, right, and pure as you fall asleep at night. Don’t linger on memories of how someone hurt you or of a recent conversation that left you feeling upset.
- Ask God to wake you with a song. I do this, and He answers by putting lyrics of worship songs in my mind. It’s a sweet way to greet the day even before getting out of bed.
- Write a Scripture verse on a recipe card and set it beside your bed. When you wake, read the verse and turn it into a prayer before doing anything else.
Your morning thoughts matter. Begin your day thinking about all things excellent, and the rest of your day will follow.