It’s raining, it’s pouring, the old man is snoring…I woke to rain, hard and cold rain. The sort of rain that makes lying in bed with my wife the most tempting decision. My friend was waiting, or would soon be. We are to run at 6am. He waits twice a week, every week. To be clear we happily run in negative 38 celsius, we sweatily and cheerily run in plus 38 celsius, our Everest is rain. Rain saps the soul, it flattens the landscape, it leads to chaffing. On mornings when it rains, it can take a lot to get out of bed and put the shoes on. 

Having a friend waiting is helpful, it creates a demand on me, not only will I be letting them down and not only do I know if I did that too much they would stop waiting for me (as I would stop waiting for them), but I know that even the rain isn’t so bad when pierced alongside a friend. Sure enough, our run was just fine (imagine that, we aren’t made of sugar after all). It was more than fine. I am happy I did it, pleased with the self-discipline that I understand is a gift of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5). I am happy because it is a good way to start the day even on a bad day. 

The preceding two paragraphs can be re-written and all you need to do is change “run” with whatever spiritual discipline you find most life-giving. The friend can be a person you know, a spouse, a spiritual brother or sister, or it may even be Jesus Himself based on your temperament and spirituality. 

Watch how easily this is about bible reading:

It’s raining, it’s pouring, the old man is snoring…I woke feeling tired, like a cold hard rain was on my soul. The sort of rain that makes lying in bed with my wife the most tempting decision. My friend was waiting, or would soon be. We are to read our bibles at 6am. He waits twice a week, every week. To be clear we happily read together in negative 38 celsius, we sweatily and cheerily read in plus 38 celsius, our Everest is feeling tired and busy. Business saps the soul, it flattens the landscape. On mornings when fatigue is winning, it can take a lot to get out of bed and grab my bible. 

Photo by icon0.com on Pexels.com

Having a friend waiting is helpful, it creates a demand on me, not only will I be letting them down and not only do I know if I did that too much they would stop waiting for me (as I would stop waiting for them), but I know that even the tiredness isn’t so bad when pierced alongside a friend. Sure enough, our reading was just fine (a little coffee may have helped:). It was more than fine. I am happy I did it, pleased with the self-discipline that I understand is a gift of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5). I am happy because it is a good way to start the day even on a bad day. 

Or Prayer (this time we retain more raining imagery as a metaphor:

It’s raining, it’s pouring, the old man is snoring…I woke to rain, hard and cold rain. The sort of rain that makes lying in bed with my wife the most tempting decision. My friend was waiting, or would soon be. We are to pray together at 6am. He waits twice a week, every week. To be clear we happily pray in negative 38 celsius, we sweatily and cheerily pray in plus 38 celsius, our Everest is rain. Rain saps the soul, it flattens the landscape, it leads to chaffing. On mornings when it rains, it can take a lot to get out of bed and put the shoes on. 

Having a friend waiting is helpful, it creates a demand on me, not only will I be letting them down and not only do I know if I did that too much they would stop waiting for me (as I would stop waiting for them), but I know that even the rain isn’t so bad when pierced alongside a friend. Sure enough, our prayer time was just fine (imagine that, we aren’t made of sugar after all). It was more than fine. I am happy I did it, pleased with the self-discipline that I understand is a gift of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5). I am happy because it is a good way to start the day even on a bad day. 

Photo by Matheus Bertelli on Pexels.com

Go ahead, stop making excuses, embrace the fruit of the spirit called self-control. If you are already there, then try to be a friend to someone who needs a little encouragement. Either way, a bad day can be turned good as we lean into the promises of faith and are formed by Christ.  

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