4 Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!
5 Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.
Philippians 4:4,5 (NKJV)
By Bro. John L. Cash, “Country Preacher Dad”
When my boys were little, there was a program we all watched together as a family. It came on the Food Network and was called “Door Knock Dinners”. Gordon Elliott went to an unsuspecting person’s home, knocked on the door and offered to have a chef prepare a gourmet meal using only the ingredients the person had on hand. No matter what was in the pantry, the team always managed to make a delicious dinner for the family.
The homes were picked at random. If there was nobody at home, or if the person didn’t have time to have a meal cooked, Gordon Elliott just went next door until somebody finally said “yes”. Sometimes the people had just come home from the grocery store, and their cupboards and refrigerators were full. And other times the family was in dire need of a “grocery run” and the pickings were very slim. Nevertheless, the chef always managed to prepare a meal that looked like something from a four-star restaurant. It was simply a matter of making the best use of what had been given.
In his epistles, the Apostle Paul is always telling us that we should “rejoice”. I think that, to Paul, each new day was a “Door Knock Dinner”. Not all days are created equal. Some mornings are full of good circumstances and joy, and others bring with them the remnants of yesterday’s problems. But every day has something good in the spiritual pantry. That’s why it’s so important to rejoice—because in rejoicing we take what the Lord has given us and use these ingredients to make the best day we can.
Sure, when you wake up with spiritual “steak and fresh vegetables” in your spiritual cupboard, it’s easier to make a great “meal” than when you wake up to find spiritual “corn meal and cold potatoes”. But our job is not to bemoan what’s in the pantry—but to make each day the best it can possibly be.
I’m finding that the world is a beautiful place. All I have to do is begin each day asking for the Lord’s help and then try to notice and fully use each blessing He has brought my way. I never have a “perfect” day, but I have so many wonderful ones when I strive to make them that way. I hope you have a great week in the Lord. I think I hear Him knocking at your door.
Dr. John L. Cash is the “Country Preacher Dad” * He was raised in Stuttgart, Arkansas, and is beginning his 25th year of being a country preacher in the piney woods five miles south of the little town of Hickory, Mississippi. He and his lovely wife, Susan, and his sons, Spencer (age 18) and Seth (age 15) live in the parsonage next door to the Antioch Christian Church (where we are earnestly endeavoring to make every day a good one). You should write him at firstname.lastname@example.org.