Starting this week, I’m adding an expression of gratitude to my morning routine

Routines are beneficial because they identify and organize helpful actions and create an efficient system to accomplish them. It’s amazing how much we can accomplish through well-planned routines.

My morning routine includes: 

  • Get out of bed
  • Put on casual clothes
  • Let Buddy outside
  • Start the coffee (French-press style)
  • Drink a glass of water (including Benefiber)
  • Read for 30 minutes
  • Review my priorities for the day
  • Get dressed for work
  • Start my day

This week I’m adding a new element: When I get out of bed, as soon as my feet hit the floor, I’m going to say out loud, “Thank you God, I am grateful for this new day.” I want my first waking thought to be an expression of gratitude. I want it to set the tone of the day. Regardless of how I feel—emotionally or physically—I am grateful for another opportunity to experience life. Even on a bad day, I’m fortunate and blessed. Every day is a gift. 

Expressions of gratitude are powerful. They set your mental path, ward off negative thoughts, produce hope and peace, and establish perspective.  

At the beginning of each new day, 24 hours of life appear before us like a blank sheet of paper. Thoughts of gratitude will help steer us in a positive, hopeful direction.

My grandson, Benjamin, is seven years old. This year we started memorizing poetry together. We’ll continue to do this for as long as I’m alive. The first poem we memorized is a hymn: For the Beauty of the Earth. It mentions 22 things for which we can be grateful. I hope the song will guide him throughout life.

For the beauty of the earth
For the glory of the skies,
For the love which from our birth
Over and around us lies.

Chorus
Lord of all, to Thee we raise,
This our hymn of grateful praise.

For the wonder of each hour,
Of the day and of the night,
Hill and vale, and tree and flower,
Sun and moon, and stars of light.

For the joy of ear and eye,
For the heart and mind’s delight,
For the mystic harmony
Linking sense to sound and sight.

For the joy of human love,
Brother, sister, parent, child,
Friends on earth and friends above,
For all gentle thoughts and mild.

For Thy Church, that evermore
Lifteth holy hands above,
Offering up on every shore
Her pure sacrifice of love.

For Thyself, best gift divine,
To our race so freely given;
For that great, great love of Thine,
Peace on earth and joy in heaven.

Words by Folliott Pierpoint

12 Replies to “Starting this week, I’m adding an expression of gratitude to my morning routine”

  1. Don,
    I am thankful for you as a worship leader who has us singing hymns of substance to encourage us in our walk with the Lord!

    1. Thanks, Claudia. Stonebriar is a wonderful and rare church. We are blessed in many ways. Thanks for your kind words.
      Don

  2. As a 30-year+ owner of a rare neuroendrocrine cancer, “each day is a gift” is a mantra I live by. I try to give thanks in how I conduct myself since as you know, you can preach “until you’re blue in the face” and meet deaf ears, or you can set an example of how to live as a “giving person” vs a “getting” one. Another mantra I try to follow is to “add value to the space you occupy”. Something I am sure you have thought about.

    Thank you for these “gifts”….

    1. Jennifer, I’m saddened to know you struggle with cancer; I’m encouraged to hear of your attitude: gratitude for each day and every moment. I like the phrase “add value to the space you occupy”; I may write a post on that. Take care, Don

  3. Hit the spot for this day! A local radio personality Hallerin Hill gives this Gratitude Challenge at the beginning of every hour on WIVK on weekday afternoons. There are also numerous Gratitude Journals available. JOY to this day the Lord has made!

  4. What a great reminder, Don, to start the day with an attitude of praise. I’m in Anchorage this week as part aof a celebration for my time as the chairman of the University of Alaska Foundation. The list of friends I’ve lost in the past 20 years (most are from AK) is well over 20….I’m saddened but can’t help but be grateful for the time that God has allowed me to be on this third rock from the sun.

    1. Mike, congratulations on your service to Alaska, both as an executive with AT&T and with the foundation. You had many cold nights. I’m so glad to be alive and I am a blessed man. Thanks for our friendship. Don

  5. Thank you for the emails. I enjoy reading them.

    A qualifying thought re: discerning “Good & Bad Days.” Every day is a “Good Day”; however, we may not experience it as such. As we walk with the Lord He promises “to work all things together for the good” in the believers. When things don’t go as I would like, I am reminded to continue in the Lord – “In everything give thanks.” “Give it my best and deal with the rest.” There are joys to be had for each day even though many label too many undesirables as a bad day. Take Care my Brother

    1. Thanks, Tony, for sharing your thoughts. In a more practical way, it does seem to me that some days are better than others. If I lived in Ukraine and a bomb landed on my house…that would be a bad day. Take care, Don.

  6. Thanks for your response. I understand the illustration, Don; however, and I think at times things occur that undoubtedly could be considered “bad things.” I think labeling the occurrence is warranted and even necessary to decide the next step, but not the entire day. Also in the Lords economy, He promises to work all things together for the good and we are in everything to give thanks. Therefore, my conclusion is that the “bad things” that we discern are often in actuality good for our growth in the Lord. Initially we may not see it or we may never see it. However, to label the day “bad” especially at the beginning of a day allows no room for the day to improve. I find it healthier to incorporate all things in my life as part of the Lord’s plan and good for me even though it may not be good to me. A thought: What is necessary for a “bad day” to become a good day? Appreciate Ya, Take Care

    1. Tony, thanks for sharing profound thoughts. I love your focus on concentrating on the long term instead of the short term. That helps balance things out. Don

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