Well over twenty-five years ago as the staff of the Bill Rice Ranch was waiting in the chapel for morning devotions to begin, Dr. Cathy Rice walked in and stood before us. She quoted Psalm 118:23 and 24, “This is the LORD’S doing; it is marvellous in our eyes. This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.” She told us that their precious granddaughter, Bethany, who was studying nursing at a local hospital had fallen from a stairwell in the hospital and had life-threatening injuries. (She passed away a few days later.) That morning is forever stamped on my memory. I thought that the verses quoted regarding the very sad news was unusual. Through the years, however, I was a witness to how this family, in the face of tragedy and day-to-day trials, kept their faith and trust in the Lord. Not once did they think about quitting. It has been a source of encouragement and hope to me.
Each New Day
Each new day is a gift from God. It brings with it challenges, struggles, hopes, dreams, fulfillment, disappointment, tragedy, happiness, sorrow, bad news, good news, complaints, conflicts, blessings, pain, victory, and defeat. Regardless of the circumstances, each day is a gift from God, and it is up to us how we respond to it. When things are going well, it is easy to rejoice, be glad and we say, “God is good.” What about when things are not going well? Is rejoicing and gladness still on the menu? Do we still say, God is good?
Rejoice and Be Glad
Several preachers at our church on Sunday, December 31, 2017, gave brief sermons sharing advice for the New Year. Ted, my husband was one of those preachers. He challenged us to remember that no matter what a day may bring, “This is the day which the LORD hath made, we will rejoice and be glad in it.” Each morning since then, we have begun our day with these words. One morning I will begin the verse and he will end it. The next time he will begin it and I will end it. Sometimes we sing it. (I am glad only the two of us hear it because both of us are lousy singers.) It is amazing how this practice has changed the way we enter into our days. We don’t always wake up feeling well, and the news from the nation and the world is often alarming and frightening, but knowing, “This is the day which the LORD hath made…” gives us reason to rejoice and be glad. And sometimes during the day when things are not going well, we remind each other to rejoice and be glad.
How About You?
How about you? How do you face the new day? One man prayed, “Lord, thank you for this day we have never had before.” How do you respond to your difficult and challenging circumstances? How can you rejoice and be glad? Here are some suggestions that may help.
*When you wake up, quote or sing the verse, “This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24).
*Tell the Lord you trust Him. “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5).
*Be thankful. Read Psalm 100:4, 5, “Enter into his gates with thanksgiving… be thankful unto him, and bless his name. For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.”
*Overcome fear. “Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed (overwhelmed); for I am thy God: I I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. For I the LORD thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee” (Isaiah 41:10, 13).
*Keep hope alive. “Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost” (Romans 15:13). We can keep hope alive in this life and in the one to come. A statement a radio preacher made many years ago when we were experiencing trials and sorrow has been a huge source of encouragement to me. He said, “As long as there is a God in Heaven, we have hope.” God will always be there, and we can always have hope.
*Rest in the Lord. “Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him” (Psalm 37:7). Stop trying to fix it and let the LORD take care of it. Sometimes when I am weary, both mind and body, I kick back in my oh – so – soft recliner, close my eyes, rest and nap. I wake up refreshed and ready to get going again. It would be good for us to “kick back” in the Lord, rest and wait patiently for him. He knows the end from the beginning, and we can rest in Him. “This is the day… (it is a gift from God). Let us rejoice and be glad in it.”
This is the Day Which the Lord hath Made
– Psalms 118:24
Lord, Thank you for this day I face
A new day of life, love, and grace.
I will rejoice and be glad in it
I rejoice for each hour and each minute.
I am glad for the fresh air I breathe
I rejoice for the majestic nature I see.
I am glad for the clouds above
I rejoice in your faithful undying love.
I truly rejoice and I am glad in it
I rejoice and I am glad for each minute.
This is a day which the Lord hath made
we will rejoice and be glad in it!
– By Ted Camp
This is written because I care – Carlene