Rise and shine! Saying this to yourself, or being told this phrase by a loved one makes waking up and getting ready for the day so inviting and encouraging. This popular expression actually originated from a Biblical passage in the Book of Isaiah:
“Arise! Shine, for your light has come, the glory of the Lord has dawned upon you.” – Isaiah 60:1
One thing, moreover, that many of us are actually guilty of at one point or another is forgetting to devote the earliest moment of each day to the ultimate source of all inspiration and love, Our Heavenly Father. All of us are in constant need of growing our personal relationship with God. But we tend to disregard it whenever we neglect to pray and accept Him ahead of everything else. Just like a loving relationship that is deepened by listening and talking with each other first thing in the morning, Prayer is a “vital” way that serves to deepen “the living relationship of the children of God with their Father.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church 2558, 2565) It is through our prayer life that we listen to and speak with God, and make better our relationship with Him, with the Blessed Mother, and with the Saints. It assists us to hear the voice of God in our hearts, telling us His will.
Though understandable, it’s unfortunate that because of the daily rush with our to-do list and chores at home, work or school, we either forget or procrastinate praying and prefer to just do it before we sleep at night. As a result, while many of our works and relationships are well attended to, our growth in spiritual life with God gets neglected.
For the faithful, moreover, a day is never ready to move without placing oneself in the hands of God. The busier our day will be, as we know it, the more we have to pause and pray, before everything gets hectic. Commending ourselves to God and to our Intercessor Saints at daybreak uplifts our souls and fills us with much needed grace and strength.
Reasons we must start the day with Prayer:
1. Adoration and Thanksgiving
Proclaiming our faith in the Divinity of the Holy Trinity and making known our gratitude to God’s Providence and the Intercession of His Saints is a glorious way to start our day. One way to do this is by praying The Divine Praises. (Click to read our Post on The Divine Praises). We can also give heartfelt formula prayers such as The Lord’s Prayer or the Our Father, Hail Mary, or Glory Be.
2. Involvement in the prayers of the Church
Priests and Religious pray the Divine Office or the Liturgy of the Hours every day, which starts early in the morning. In the Recent times, more and more lay people involve in these prayers throughout the day, and we too can try to do so given the time. In our own words, we can also pray for the intentions of the Holy Father and those offered in the Holy Mass. Keep in mind, brothers and sisters in Christ, that praying for others is an act of love.
It is true that God already understands all that we are to ask of Him. Still, we must try to communicate to Him in prayer our desires and petitions for our loved ones and ourselves. What better time to do that than during the start of each day to show that we rely on Him for everything in our life.
4. An Act of Humility
Humbling ourselves before God by calling on to Him in prayer, and offering Him everything even before anything gets done, is a good routine to assist us to progress in virtue. Morning prayer is also a time to request for God’s forgiveness for our shortcomings (we need not wait for dusk), to lift up to God our weaknesses, and to accept that it is only by God’s assistance that we can resist temptations.
5. Union with God
Saint John Vianney, patron saint of parish priests, said, “Prayer is nothing else than union with God.” And when we are united to God, he added, “we feel within ourselves a joy, a sweetness that
Here is a Morning Offering written by St. Thérèse of Lisieux whose Feast we celebrated on October 1. This prayer from the Little Flower reminds us to make God the first and foremost of all that we are and do on earth so that we may be with Him in Heaven someday for all eternity.
Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, pray for us!