August 24, 2008
This is the day that the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:24
Over the years I've had the opportunity to celebrate with a few people who had managed to reach their 100th birthday.
Such a celebration would be incomplete without someone asking, "What is the secret of your longevity?"
I've been amazed at some of the responses I've heard to that question.
Some elderly have said, "I owe it all to good, clean living." Others have replied, "It's because I smoke three cigars a day and drink a quart of brandy before lunch."
But the best answer I ever heard came from a little old lady.
At her birthday party, one of her great-great-nephews asked the question. Without a blink, and with a bright twinkle in her eye, she replied, "I can't say for sure, but I kind of think it's because I didn't stop breathing. As near as I can tell, not breathing was what stopped most of my friends from living as long as I have."
Both family and friends roared their appreciation of her light-hearted outlook at life.
I wish there were more folks like her. Indeed, as I go out and talk with people, all too often I see them dwelling on the dark and depressing side of life.
Physical ailments, troubles in the world, deflation, inflation, and a host of other difficulties make them grumpy and disheartened.
If that's true for you, I encourage you, by God's grace, shake it off!
The truth is, every day 'we're breathin' God gives us joy. Every day that God gives his forgiven and adopted children is an opportunity for them to share the peace and the hope which they have in their Savior. Every day is a day that the Lord has made and the Savior's redeemed can rejoice in it.
So, folks, if the grumps have got you down, then let the Lord buck you up! The Lord is with you as long as you keep breathin' and because of His Son, will continue to be with you when you stop.
THE PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for every day that You have given me. Help me rejoice in the little and big graces which come from Your hand. Let this be my resolve in the world, even as it will be my joy in the next. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries