I’ve had serious disagreements with people regarding early morning devotions or late at-night devotions. Many have argued that they are not morning people so it’s not good for them to do their devotions or prayer time in the morning. I’ve always been a morning person. I expect that the Navy taught me that over my many years with them. I wasn’t always a morning person. The Navy made me adjust my life to become one. I didn’t like it, but I changed, and it has served me well for the rest of my life. As I write this now, it’s 6 am and I’ve been awake for about an hour enjoying my coffee and some quiet time. Even on shore duty in the Navy and while at Seminary I would be the first one to class or in the office most days and would have productive days. During my 30+ years in the pastorate, I always made sure I was the first one to church on Sundays. I would have early prayer meetings with the staff to start the worship day off by looking to the Lord. A nice side effect of getting up early in the morning is that I would be tired and ready for bed when it was time. I think I always slept better. In Psalm 5, verse 3, David shares his daily routine with us. He says, “O Lord, in the morning you hear my voice; in the morning I prepare a sacrifice for you and watch.” He makes a similar claim later in Psalm 119:147 when he says, “I rise before dawn and cry for help.” It appears that this was Jesus’ habit as well. Mark 1:35 says, “And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed.”

It’s always good to study the Bible and pray, no matter what time of day or night. Having regular personal devotional time is very important to maintaining a strong and growing connection with God. While it is certainly not “wrong” to have your devotions at night before going to bed, it has been a blessing to me to start with God in the morning. I need my coffee. But not as much as I need God. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Jesus said, “Man does not live by bread (food) alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” A web blogger asks some very interesting questions, “Why do you think Job said he treasured God’s Word more than his necessary food? Why do you think Jeremiah said he ate God’s Word when he found it? Why do you think David said God’s Word was more valuable to him than thousands of pieces of gold and silver?”[1]

Regardless of whether you seek God in the morning or the evening, one thing that is implied by this verse is that the Psalmist was persistent in his prayer life. Boice explains this well, he says persistence is “seen in the repeated phrase ‘in the morning; (v. 3). It carries the ideas of ‘as soon as it is morning’ and ‘every morning.’ It reminds us of the Lord’s teaching about the unjust judge who did not want to help a poor widow but who eventually gave her justice just to escape her constant petitions. Jesus concluded, ‘And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off?’ (Luke 18:7). His point was that we are to persist in prayer even if, for reasons unknown to us, the answer of God is delayed. God will not refuse to act forever.”[2]

[1] https://kingdomnomics.com/2017/03/26/gods-word-food-for-the-soul/

[2] Boice, James Montgomery. 2005. Psalms 1–41: An Expositional Commentary. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.