Several times a week I begin my morning devotions with a prayer of dialogue between Jesus and me, with David and Paul supplying my words and sometimes commentary. After giving the dialogue below, I will explain why I have found it to be a powerful way to begin the day.
Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me. Rev 3:20*
Me (using David’s words)
O Lord, in the morning [you] hear my voice;
in the morning I prepare a sacrifice for [you], and watch. Psalms 5:3 (RSV)
Paul providing commentary
I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:1,2
Me (using Paul’s words)
I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. Gal 2:20
Paul providing commentary
And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. 2 Cor 5:15
This is my command: Love each other. John 15:17
[Live] in me, as I also [live] in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must [live] in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you [live] in me. John 15:4**
All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations. . .and surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. Matt 28:18-20
As I pray these words day after day, the Holy Spirit gifts me with thought “treasures old and new.”
- Rev 3:20 Jesus initiates the conversation, desiring to spend time with me.
- Psalms 5:3 The RSV version differs so radically from other versions that I could not understand it until I realized that David was alluding to the story of Elijah on Mt. Carmel.
- Rom 12:1,2 Paul explains the significance of being a living sacrifice and how I can be transformed and know God’s will for me.
- Gal 2:20 What can be said about this remarkable testimony? I continue to learn from, and be astonished at, these words, praying that they will be a reality in my life.
- 2 Cor 5:15 Paul expands the blessing to all and states the purpose of life in a single phrase.
- Matt 28:18-20 Jesus has the final word and gives direction to my day.
Morning Dialogue can be used in your morning devotions or in your academy or college-age students’ devotions. You could introduce the dialogue by having three students do a stage reading, taking the parts of Jesus, Paul, or Me. When the reading is finished, each student in class would write their insights on a 3 x 5 card. You could collect and read the cards outside of class and then organize them by patterns you see. The next day you would then report to the students on their collective insights.
*All texts are from the NIV except where noted.
**I have substituted live for remain.