So the evening and the morning were the first day (Genesis 1:5).
How many times do we wake up in the morning and speak of starting a new day? Many of us did so even today, didn’t we? And yet, scripturally speaking, we aren’t starting a new day when we wake up, but rather continuing the one that started the previous evening. And that’s an important distinction.
God doesn’t do or say things capriciously. He always has a reason for every word, every action, and creation certainly is no exception. God began the cycle of a new day in the evening because He wanted us to understand the need to rest BEFORE beginning our activities. We, on the other hand, have turned it around so that we do our “busy work” first, and then fall into bed, exhausted and in need of rest. Wouldn’t it make more sense to follow God’s pattern of resting first—drawing on His strength—and THEN going out to do whatever it is He has called us to that day?
When Mary and Joseph noticed their twelve-year-old son, Jesus, was missing, they returned to Jerusalem and found Him in the Temple. “Didn’t you understand that I must be about My Father’s business?” was His response to their concern.
The Father’s business. Isn’t that what we are to be about as well? Isn’t that how we are to spend our days? But how can we do so if we haven’t first spent time with Him, as Jesus made a practice of doing regularly—listening for His voice, His Word, His direction, communing with Him, and learning to rest. For it is as we rest in Him that we understand what He has purposed for us to do and are enabled to respond accordingly.
Too many times we run ourselves ragged during the day—working, playing, serving, ministering—all in our own strength. And we wonder why have no feeling of lasting accomplishment when we’re done and why all we want to do is sleep and recover from the day’s activities. Perhaps it’s because we have it all backward. Why not try turning things around by first thinking of your day as beginning at night, when you go to bed to rest. Spend some time communing with God—before you fall asleep, the moment you wake up—and then, rested and refreshed, continue the day in His strength, rather than your own. Chances are you’ll accomplish a lot more of the Father’s business.