How to Get a Good Start on the Day

by Upper Room Editorial on Monday, July 17, 2017

Have you ever noticed how your first thoughts in the morning set the tone for your day?

Often we carry those first thoughts into the rest of our day, so I desperately need God to renew my mind every morning. When my alarm goes off, it takes a few minutes for my groggy brain to wake up. By the time I pry myself out of bed, thoughts start popping up in my mind:

Do I really have to go walking this morning?

How can I get my kids to do their chores?

I can’t believe he said that yesterday.

As I stumble down the hall to the kitchen and the hope of coffee, the voices of the world start sneaking up on me. I remember yesterday’s to-do list half undone and today’s dentist appointment. God’s voice seems somehow quieter, harder to hear than the world’s voice. Yet if I stop to pay attention, I can hear God say things like these:

“You’re not alone.”

“Do not fear, for I am with you.”

“I will strengthen you and help you.”

“I am in control. I have a plan for you.”

“I love you.”

We never know what the day ahead holds. In today’s devotion, I wrote about how I ended up in the emergency room with my husband. I never expected that. We also never know who God will bring across our paths for us to show kindness to. Yet if we start each day out with God, we’ll be better equipped for whatever or whoever comes into our lives.

The psalmist wrote, “And when I wake up, you are still with me!” (Psalm 139:18). God’s already there waiting for me when I wake up, so how do I open myself to hear his gentle, quiet voice?

Of course the easiest way to hear it is through reading the Bible, but I’ve made a baby-step decision. When I wake up, before getting out of bed, I say good morning to God. Even before I make coffee and reach for my Bible, I whisper, “Good morning, God. Fill me with your Holy Spirit today. Empower me to live for you.”

I want to start my day with thoughts of my Heavenly Father. I can trust he’ll prepare me for whatever is ahead.

- Betsy de Cruz

Betsy de Cruz writes at to encourage people to stick close to God, even when life gets crazy. If you subscribe to her blog, she’d love to send you a free Bible study guide, "10 Days to More." In it you’ll find 10 different devotional Bible study methods.


Comment by julie of Delray Beach, FL

Great message,something I need to remember as I go through my day.

Posted July 17, 2017 at 03:20AM CDT
Comment by Edd of Ocala, FL

Betsy, I love the idea of saying goo morning to God when you first awaken. You didn't say how Jose did, was it a stroke and if so I pray he is doing well. God is Love for All!!!

Posted July 17, 2017 at 03:53AM CDT
Comment by Betsy

Thanks so much, Julie. May the Lord bless you today!

Edd, Jose is doing very well. We found out later it might have been a strange type of migraine that mimicked a mini-stroke, but he is in amazing shape. Thanks for asking.

Posted July 17, 2017 at 04:01AM CDT
Comment by jeff of albemarle, NC

Thank you for your lesson today,glad to hear it was not a stroke! Thanks again great way to start the day.

Posted July 17, 2017 at 04:34AM CDT
Comment by Judy of Hershey, PA

You've given us two beautiful meditations today and they have lifted my spirit. I enjoyed reading your blog too. God has given you a talent for writing and touching other people's hearts with messages about His love. God bless you, Betsy, as you go about sowing seeds of encouragement from Jesus' own hand.

Posted July 17, 2017 at 04:51AM CDT
Comment by Tim of Columb, TN

Nice blog. I subscribed.

Posted July 17, 2017 at 04:58AM CDT
Comment by patricia of laurelton, NY

Thank you Betsy, the very first thing I do when I wake up is turn on my tablet, then while it is loading I take my acid reflux medication and then come to this Church. Now I am going to add "Good morning God, fill me with your Holy Spirit today, empower me to live for you". God bless you and I hope your husband has fully recovered from the mini stroke.๐Ÿ˜‡๐Ÿ˜‡๐Ÿ˜‡๐ŸŒป๐ŸŒž๐ŸŽ†๐Ÿ˜Š

Posted July 17, 2017 at 05:23AM CDT
Comment by cherie of Inverness, FL

Betsy, so happy to hear that Jose is doing good and it wasn't a stroke! Love to you, sister! I'm going to start saying Good morning to God too!! Love and Light to you and Jose!

Posted July 17, 2017 at 05:39AM CDT
Comment by merry of Poteau, OK

Betsy...beautiful pictures of you and your husband. Encouraging devotional.

Posted July 17, 2017 at 06:18AM CDT
Comment by Kathy

Beautiful message, Betsy!! I start my day with an Upper Room devotion each morning. Recently I slept in and did not "have time" to read the devotion for that day. I am so thankful we can subscribe to it on-line as it was the first thing I did when I arrived (on time!) at work. My day would not be right if I didn't start it with God. I am so thankful He is ahead of me, behind me, beside me, over me and under me. God bless the work you do, Betsy.
~ Kathy in Canada, Hamilton, Ontario

Posted July 17, 2017 at 06:32AM CDT
Comment by J of Washington, DC

Good morning, Father. Thank you for another day. My morning and afternoon prayers are full of thanksgiving. (Psalms 150) than I closed with prayers requests (my and/or others and/or Holy Spirit).
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 and songs.

Posted July 17, 2017 at 07:18AM CDT
Comment by Betsy

Glad to hear you are flexible when you miss reading the devotional upon rising and still do it a bit later in your day, Kathy. I think it's so important that we don't let our relationship with God derail completely just because we missed our quiet time in the morning. (Although of course doing it first thing helps us connect to Him later in the day. We just have to be flexible when we miss it, don't we?

Thanks to all for the encouragement and visits to my blog. :)

Posted July 17, 2017 at 07:20AM CDT
Comment by J of Washington, DC

Thank God your husband is okay and he has a testimony on God's healing power-miracle.
(As a child I suffered from migraines (sometimes twice a month; my recovery time from each migraine ranged from 7-10 days), so at the age of twenty, I researched and found out that migraines can be inherited, have underlaying trigger(s), and can mimic stokes. From that day forward to the present day I follow a stroke-diet and by listening and obeying my body I normally can prevent trigger(s). )

Posted July 17, 2017 at 07:39AM CDT
Comment by Carolyn of Austin, TX

Wonderful message. This is the day the Lord has made. Yes. He deserves a "Good Morning greeting."

Posted July 17, 2017 at 07:53AM CDT
Comment by Karen of Jackson, MS

Thank you Betty for your devotional. I too am going to remember when I wake up each morning to say" good morning to God fill me with your Holy Spirit today. Empower me to live for you. " Beautiful picture of you and your husband glad he's doing fine. Be Blessed!๐Ÿ™๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿฝ

Posted July 17, 2017 at 08:58AM CDT
Comment by Rudy of Chicago, IL

Thank you Betsy for your encouraging message. To know that God is with us each & everyday is a miracle in itself. Thank you!

Posted July 17, 2017 at 09:30AM CDT
Comment by Brenda of Arnoldsville, GA

"Good Morning Father, Hello Jesus, welcome Holy Spirit. Thank you for this day, for the blessings it will hold may I be worthy, and it's challenges may I be capable" is my daily morning prayer. I so appreciate your words this morning, Betsy, as our firstborn daughter has been an ER nurse for the last 14 years; the last two as the administrator in charge. She works hard to remind her nurses to be kind, gentle, and peaceful. Sent this to her just now (even though she's sleeping as she worked 12 hrs last night and will go back for the next three) to encourage her to "keep on keeping on" as it is appreciated! Grateful for all the prayers for Emergency Healthcare Workers. Headed to your blog...

Posted July 17, 2017 at 09:54AM CDT
Comment by Kelley

Thanks for the update on Jose's condition. I'm glad he's doing well!

Posted July 17, 2017 at 12:29PM CDT