“Let there be lights in the dome of the sky to separate the day from the night; and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years … ”
14 And God said, ‘Let there be lights in the dome of the sky to separate the day from the night; and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years, 15 and let them be lights in the dome of the sky to give light upon the earth.’ And it was so. 16 God made the two great lights—the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night—and the stars. 17 God set them in the dome of the sky to give light upon the earth, 18 to rule over the day and over the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good. 19 And there was evening and there was morning, the fourth day.
|We live by a natural rhythm of day and night, with that rhythm encoded in our DNA, and we know how it feels when that pattern is disrupted.|
Ahead of the weekly pattern of rest we find on the seventh day (the sabbath), the fourth day in Genesis 1 sets out a daily cycle of waking and resting. Taking time on waking to dedicate our day to God and to review the day in thanksgiving and prayer before sleep is an ancient Christian tradition.
As we enter the second half of Lent, can you establish a rhythm of prayer that echoes the natural pattern of day and night?
Visit the Church of England Everyday Faith website page for some suggestions.
Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above,
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.
Great is thy faithfulness! Great is thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed thy hand hath provided —
Great is thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!
From “Great is thy faithfulness”,
by Thomas Chisholm (1866–1960)
Start and end your day with a prayer
Jesus taught his followers to pray every day. When you wake up, ask God to bless your day. And thank God before you go to sleep.
|Reflections from the Church House Publishing booklet #LiveLent: Care for God’s Creation – A 40-Day Challenge inspired and informed by the Archbishop of Canterbury’s 2020 Lent book Saying Yes to Life by Ruth Valerio (SPCK) are copyright 2020 The Archbishops’ Council and used here with permission. Full details of both resources are available on the Church of England website.|
Bible readings are taken from The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. All rights reserved.