Oh Boy! I have to tell you this … I woke up so early this morning …. and yesterday morning … and the morning before that! Oh. My. Goodness. In my prayer journal (where I often write out my prayers to God) I literally asked him, “When am I going to get a good night’s sleep again?”
But anyway – back to my story.
In these days of early reveille, I have not been jolted awake because of a storm – nor because of worry – not even because of insomnia – just awake for no reason. I guess it means it’s time to start having a good morning, good day, get on the move. I remembered when I first started my blog back in 2012, I almost always started it with:
OK! Everybody Up! Rise and Shine! Good Morning … Ready?
I couldn’t help it. I was simply sharing the creation of a new day and giving everyone something to put on that blank slate we call TODAY. I never found out if it worked or not but here’s something I learned – are you interested? While reading scripture from the Message translation, I was shocked when this verse jumped off the page. Proverbs 27:14 “If you wake your friend early in the morning by shouting “Rise and shine!” it will sound more to him like a curse than like a blessing.”
What?!?! Are you kidding me? Can that be right? So reverse it … reread it … uh-huh! That’s what it says alright! “If you wake your friend early in the morning by shouting “Rise and shine!” …. Oh boy! This might not be good.
The truth is, I would rather be a blessing than a curse and certainly try to pour encouragement from my pen. The words of Ephesians 4:2 pretty well describe my intent of coaxing the hopeful spirit of OK! Everybody Up! Rise and Shine!. From a devotional book eloquently crafted by Max Lucado, he writes this: “Always be humble, gentle, and patient, accepting each other in love. You are joined together with peace through the Spirit, so make every effort to continue together in this way.”
“Always be humble, gentle, and patient, accepting each other in love. You are joined together with peace through the Spirit, so make every effort to continue together in this way.”
Once upon a time, at least 15 years ago, a guy on my project team a group of co-workers that he didn’t like me because ‘I was too perky – too happy. I came in and said good morning to people I didn’t even know – too positive.’ Considering his assessment I had a few options. The one I chose was this conversation. “I’m sorry you don’t like me. But I do like me this way. I doubt that I’m going to change who I am because you can’t tolerate kindness. I hope we can still work together and be productive.” I’m not sure if that conversation had anything to do with his sudden departure for a job offer in Florida or not. I hope he found what he was looking for in an environment more aligned with his mindset and that he was able to find joy in tolerable doses.
If you asked the purpose behind why I started every blog with OK! Everybody Up! Rise and Shine! It wouldn’t be to brashly ignore the Proverbs 27:14 warning. It would be aligned more with these words in Proverbs 25:13 “Reliable friends who do what they say are like cool drinks in sweltering heat refreshing!” I don’t blog much anymore – but I still try to pour encouragement into someone every day.
Words of encouragement are medicine for despair; music for the soul; a prescription for spiritual poverty. I will never attain the wisdom or zeal of the Apostle Paul, but reading his stories teach me to be content, seek good, guard my mind, protect my heart, practice thanks-living, and be an evangelist of joy.
How about it? Ready for today – ready for any day – early, at daybreak, afternoon, evening – what can each of us do to be a spark of encouragement in some way to someone.
OK! Everybody Up! Rise and Shine! Ready? Let’s get out there!