A Case Study: How to Use the Word to Pray About Your Day.
First. As most of us do, I wake up with a “to do list” in my head. Today, for example, I have a lot on the list because my parents arrive from Florida for my graduation on Thursday.
Second. Before I open my Bible, I pray: Lord, open my eyes to see wonderful things in your law (Psalm 119:18).
Third. Since I follow the M’Cheyne Bible Reading Plan*, I open my Bible to Numbers 28 and Psalm 72. As I read, I try to pick (at least) one thing that stands out from each passage. Today, the following does:
- Numbers. I notice that a theme emerges: give God your first fruits early and pure. I get this from 28:3 (“This is the offering … that you are to present to the Lord: two lambs a year old without defect as a regular burnt offering each day), 28:11 (On the first of every month, present to the Lord a burnt offering of two young bulls), and 28:26 (On the day of first fruits, when you present to the Lord an offering of new grain during the Feast of Weeks, hold a sacred assembly and do no regular work).
- Psalm. May his name endure forever; may it continue as long as the sun. All nations will be blessed through him, and they will call him blessed (72:17).
Fourth. I use the passages to pray about the list in my head. Rather than focusing on the details of the day, I use the details to focus on my character. For example.
Lord, I wake up this morning with many things to do. I know that busy days present unique challenges that tempt me to be impatient, anxious, and annoyed. Those traits are not of you. Rather, I want to be peaceful, thankful, and joyful – knowing that all these things will come and go but you will endure forever, longer than the sun (Psalm 72). In order to have this perspective, I want to give you my first fruits (Numbers 28) as a praise and an offering to you. So, on this busy day, I give you my first moments. My schedule and my life are yours. Guide me through today. Amen.
You can do this with whatever passage you read in your own reading plan. The Bible is accessible to us since the Lord longs to bless us through knowing his Word.
*Note. If you are interested in checking out the M’Cheyne plan, there are various PDF versions online. The two easiest to print appear to be here and here. Note that I prefer reading only 2 chapters – rather than 4 – each day, so this year I am doing the “family” readings since I did the “secret” readings last year.