We, men, are at war – an epic spiritual battle. With every sun rise, a new threat awaits. Unforeseen bombs will be lobbed our way. Fiery darts will be aimed at our character. Other weapons are fashioned to blast our armor. Organized legions are positioned to break through our walls. You and I are fighting the good fight of faith. Since this is one fight you simply cannot afford to lose today without grave consequences the question becomes one of health – your spiritual health. So let’s start with breakfast shall we? How do you load up to win?
I’m not talking about a carb load. I’m talking about the “bread of life” and the “living water” that deliver first food to a man of God both for short-term power and long-term rewards.
I think many of us fall into a morning routine that starts with jolt of caffeine, reviewing Facebook posts and scanning the news. We can easily overlook the battle being waged while we bury our nose in the sports pages. Is that feeding your mind and spirit with proper preparation and spiritual nutrition to face an antagonistic culture, a deceptive flesh, and seasoned enemy?
In Colossians 3 we get a glimpse of how to live and what to focus on, to “set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” (The rest of the chapter offers practical advice as well.)
Men need to re-calibrate how we think, and establish the correct vision for the day. And it starts in the morning. That’s how Jesus did it. That’s how David did it. That’s how we should do it.
If focusing on Jesus, “seeking first the kingdom of God”, is truly our top priority in our life then we need to put him first in our day. After all, it’s a privilege to meet with the Creator of the universe, Savior of our souls and Lord of life. So here’s the how, who, what, where, when and why to eat the Breakfast of Champions.
When we wake up, we need to develop a ravishing hunger and thirst for God.
- “As a deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for you, O God.” -- Psalm 42:1-2
It’s counter-intuitive to think of “who” to eat. But Jesus said if we feed and drink of him, we will not hunger or thirst -- both metaphors for spiritual nutrition for our souls.
- “Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” -- John 6:35
- “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me to drink.” -- John 7:37
Our morning routine should begin with reading the Bible and praying. You may also review daily devotionals, like the one we provide here, which provides added interpretation and application from the Word of God.
- “It is written, man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” -- Matthew 4:4
Then, in Luke 1:1-11, Jesus taught us what to pray for, and the related promise that God listens.
- “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” -- Luke 1:9-10
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. When we rise up, we should set our hearts and minds “on things above,” expecting God’s presence in our lives, before focusing on our agendas, to-dos and relationships.
- “Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love, for in you I trust. Make me know the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.” -- Psalm 143:8
- “It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises to your name, O Most High, to declare your steadfast love in the morning...” -- Psalm 92:1
- “Oh Lord, in the morning you hear my voice; in the morning I prepare a sacrifice for you and watch.” -- Psalm 5:3
Prayer is simply talking to God about whatever is on your mind. Ask Him for help, share your burdens honestly, even angrily. Therefore, you may want to retreat to a location free from eavesdroppers, distractions and temptations.
- “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.” -- Mark 1:35
- “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” -- Luke 5:16
A morning started with the breakfast of champions is a morning that’s re-calibrated, prepared for the battles ahead and for a future in heaven.
- “Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life...whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.” -- John 6:54
Finally, we need our Wheaties to be armed for the spiritual battle. I suggest reviewing and praying this scripture every morning.
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” -- Ephesians 6:10-18
*As the founder and president of Every Man Ministries, Kenny Luck’s experience as the men’s pastor at Saddleback Church helped him to create the blueprint for a men’s ministry. Tools, tips, and resources are at men’s fingertips with the Sleeping Giant program. Watch Kenny’s teachings at EveryManMinistries.com.