When life’s responsibilities are pressing it is easy to forget how to rejoice. Our natural response to trouble is to murmur and complain, to become solemn and go through life with a wrinkled forehead. We complain there are children’s bikes in the driveway instead of rejoicing that there are children. We murmur about the menu instead of rejoicing that God has provided food.
One evening when I was a boy our family was trying to adjust to an unfamiliar town, a troubled church, mild culture shock, and inadequate pay. We sat down to a meal and everyone could tell that mom and dad were under pressure. One of my little brothers reached for something without asking first and knocked over his drink.
Instantly Dad sprang back from the table, knocking the chair over and striding from the room. The atmosphere was charged with tension and we all sat and looked around in uncomfortable silence. No one spoke. We wondered if Dad would come back to eat.
In a minute we heard noise and then Dad showed up in the door. He was dressed in a full-length rain coat. We all burst into laughter. Dad sat down and we enjoyed a meal together laughing and talking at the same time.
Are you solemn, sober, sullen, or are you do you take the lead in rejoicing when things are dark and difficult? Do you lift people’s sights to God and to good when things are hard? You can if you chose to. God will help you.
August 28, 2007