Ramon J. Canals, DMin, serves as secretary of the Ministerial Association, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, Silver Spring, Maryland, United States.

A few years ago, I led a group of missionaries to the Dominican Republic to conduct evangelistic meetings and community services. We stayed in a hotel near the beach, and the view was spectacular. During our daily worship gatherings, I often heard someone say, “What a beautiful day!” I responded, “Folks, in this country, we never say, ‘What a beautiful day.’ Do you want to know why? It’s because every single day here is beautiful.”

From preparing sermons to attending meetings, pastoral realities may preclude each day being beautiful. But three practical steps can ensure positivity and fulfillment—every day.

Choose your sleep—every day

Sleep is crucial for our overall well-being as it helps restore our body and mind, allowing us to function at our best. Experts recommend seven or eight hours of sleep daily. The psalmist says, “It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for he gives to his beloved sleep” (Ps. 127:2).

Author Christopher Nash states, “The rebuke of Psalm 127 is to those of us whose sleeplessness is caused by anxious toil—burning the candle at both ends because we won’t trust God for the work.”1 To have a great day, it is essential to prepare yourself the night before by getting sufficient quality sleep.

Choose your attitude—every day

Someone said, “Your attitude determines your altitude.” Our natural reaction to negative events is anger, sadness, worry, or depression. Whatever has happened to us is usually out of our control. We do have control, however, over our attitude. We have the power to choose. We can choose to be happy and peaceful despite the circumstances around us.

Jesus said, “ ‘Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?’ ” (Matt. 6: 25–27, NIV).

The text emphasizes the importance of staying present and focusing on the current moment.

Choose your focus—every day

As soon as you wake up, begin focusing your mind on Jesus. Come to Jesus as you are. Bring your burdens to Him. Author Ellen White says, “If you see your sinfulness, do not wait to make yourself better. How many there are who think they are not good enough to come to Christ. Do you expect to become better through your own efforts? ‘Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil.’ Jeremiah 13:23. There is help for us only in God. We must not wait for stronger persuasions, for better opportunities, or for holier tempers. We can do nothing of ourselves. We must come to Christ just as we are.”2

Thank the Lord for allowing you to be alive. Everything else falls into place when we prioritize God in our lives. Jesus said, “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble” (Matt. 6:31–34, NKJV).

Wrap up

Abraham Lincoln is reported to have said, “The best thing about the future is that it comes only one day at a time.” It encourages us to take charge of our day by making deliberate choices about our thoughts and actions. It serves as a powerful reminder that we can take control of our own lives in order to guide the lives of others. By following these simple steps, we can ensure that we have a great day every day, regardless of the circumstances.

  1. Christopher Ash, “Pastoral ministry and the struggle to sleep,” The Gospel Coalition, March 14, 2016, https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/pastoral-ministry-and-the-struggle-to-sleep.
  2. Ellen G. White, Steps to Christ (Mountain View, CA: Pacific Press, 1956), 31.

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Ramon J. Canals, DMin, serves as secretary of the Ministerial Association, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, Silver Spring, Maryland, United States.

May 2024

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