The first thing that our dogs do when I get up to take them outside — is that they stretch. Even if they were already moving around and making noise to wake me up, once they see that it is actually time to get up and go — they stretch.
Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.
Romans 12:12 ESV
Harvard Medical School has this wonderful article on the benefits of stretching: https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-importance-of-stretching
And beloved, when we start our day rejoicing in Christ our hope, we have stretched spiritually in the way that prepares us to be patient in tribulation — The Way that starts the marathon of our day in that constant, abiding prayer of an enjoyable walk with the Lord.
Even though it is wrongly attributed to Confucius all over the Internet, my mind is brought to the quote first attributed to Princeton Philosophy professor Arthur Szathmary:
An old-timer I knew used to tell his students: ‘Find something you love to do and you’ll never have to work a day in your life.’
It is amazing how a stretch, a preparation, an attitude adjustment to start our day can have such a powerful impact — it is a right alignment with God’s grace.
Lord, thank you for so many blessings. Thank you for beloved friends, family, coworkers, neighbors, and a job and calling that allows me to serve others in a way that isn’t burdensome. I know that this freedom wasn’t free and that you have bought me out of that old life where I looked at things wrong and dreaded what lay before me — mainly because I did not start by surrendering, humbling, remembering what curses I truly deserve as opposed to what blessings I have received. Your grace is so deep, so wide, so strong. Thank you. Amen.
Side Note: This is a pretty good practical application video that I watched last night that you might find interesting and helpful: https://youtu.be/B1kMj5fIUNY