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Here’s a part of a poem by Ralph Cushman: “I met God in the morning when the day was at its best, And his presence came like sunrise, Like a glory in my breast. All day long, his presence lingered, All day long, he stayed with me, and we sailed in perfect calmness over a very troubled sea. Other ships were blown and battered, other ships were sore distressed, but the winds that seemed to drive them brought to me peace and rest. So I think I know the secret, learned from many a troubled way: you must seek Him in the morning if you want Him through the day.” Ezra Chapter 3 tells us that ancient Israel realized this when they returned home from exile. They had been in Babylon 70 years because they violated God’s covenant. Exile refined them and taught them some valuable lessons. So upon returning, the first thing they did was to rebuild the altar. This indicated their intent to confess their sins, to trust only in God, and dedicate themselves to doing His will. They knew from bitter experience that to forsake God and pursue fleshly desires, material possessions, and the pride that comes from cheating others—had resulted in God’s judgment. After 70 years in exile, they were now ready to trust only God. Like them, we must meet God each morning to seek His wisdom and strength to help us during the day.

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