As the saying goes, "don't take the small things for granted" and on this cool morning those small things chose to display the splendor of God’s creation. The trees gently swayed as if yawning and stretching to life and the soul of the earth seemed to awaken with every drop of rain. I couldn’t understand the closeness that I felt to this unspectacular natural cycle, but eventually, I realised that much like the birds and trees, that God chose me to be among the living that day. As the rain transitioned from a pitter patter to a downpour, my heart began to overflow with gratitude.
I love mornings because it reminds me of newness and puts into perspective that the same God who created the order for the sun to rise each day, and for the birds to sing their melody of praise at dawn, is the same God who woke me up for purpose, and dare I say, greatness. Jesus himself described the effortless beauty of the lilies and their adornment as incomparable to any. I imagine that the praise of King David in Psalm 143:8 was birthed from a similar enchantment with God's faithfulness each morning, when he said:
Cause me to hear Your lovingkindness in the morning,
For in You do I trust;
Cause me to know the way in which I should walk,
For I lift up my soul to You.
I’m alive! I’m alive because God knows that I am still needed in this world. Thank you Jesus for Life! Yes, He woke us up this morning and when He did, He allowed us to connect with our five senses. Our muscles are working, our brain is alert and agile, and our needs are met. Yes, we are alive! God kept us alive so that like King Hezekiah we can pour our praise on Him. “For Sheol cannot thank You, Death cannot praise You; those who go down to the pit cannot hope for Your truth. The living, the living man, he shall praise You”. (Isaiah 38:18)
Mankind must know that one more day is one more opportunity. One more opportunity to accept Jesus’s sacrifice for you. One more opportunity to extend forgiveness to the person who hurt you. One more day to be the one to ‘turn the chair’ and seek the restoration of a broken relationship. One more day to take that first step to make the dream that you have been carrying, a reality. Indeed, “the steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is [His] faithfulness.” (Lam 3:22-23)
I trust that God in waking me up, saw purpose for me in the day, and He signals new beginnings every time the night makes way for light. The new day is more than just another day to grind, it is life, it is grace, it is love and it is purpose. I know that for many persons the nighttime represents escape or rest from the responsibilities and challenges that cause them to dread the changing of the guard in the circadian rhythm. The nighttime may also be the only time that parents get some ‘me/us’ time and many people are most productive in the quietness of the night. But rejoice, because the dawn of a new day comes and it is the goodness of God that kept our hearts beating, filled our lungs with air and equipped us with everything that we will need for that day. It reminds me of the words of a song by Rev. Dr. Ulston Patmore Smith that says:
“In the morning Lord we praise your Holy name,
In the night time, we worship at your throne.”
We should always praise and worship God for keeping us alive; for causing us to experience everything that the new day has to offer, because we know that it is “in Him we live and move and have our being”. (Acts 17:28)
The Honourable Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, Dr. Keith Rowley, has been startling some and humouring others for the past few months with his shady retorts, ‘old time’ sayings and pure genius responses, during the Covid-19 press briefings. One of my all-time favourites was “you can hear me, because you are alive”. This was his reply to a question about the judiciousness of stifling economic activity by closing the borders and shutting down businesses. Understandably, the response was his effort to provide perspective on the seriousness of the pandemic and to punctuate the importance of preserving life over livelihood at the time. In typical Trinbagonian style, the jokes and memes quickly followed, but I hope that the nation did not miss the message, because another verse out of the holy grail of ‘old people sayings' is true, “where there is life, there is hope”.
Praise and thank God for your life, then move with power and purpose to fulfil your call while you are still here.