Life is full of things we don’t have and dreams unfulfilled. But life is also full of things we can be thankful for. How we look at life can often be summed up by “is it half-full or half-empty?”
Most catchphrases or sayings we use have stories behind them. We use them in everyday life but rarely know their origin. Here is the story behind one saying that near and dear to my heart. One pre-season football camp at Millersville State College back in the 1970s as the team left the campus in the wee hours of the morning on the way to the Marine Corps Base at Quantico to “toughen the team up,” the bus drove past a large cemetery, and as our head coach pointed to the rows and rows of tombstones that looked somewhat eerie though the early morning haze, he looked back at a bus full of “happy campers” and said, “Men, it really is a great day to be alive.” The response, somewhat sarcastically, “Okay, whatever you say Coach”
Every season after that year during the hot and tiring days of pre-season football camp, Coach Carp as we affectionately called him, would walk through the dorms at five o’clock in the morning blowing his whistle and yelling to us, “Men, it’s a great day to be alive.” With sore and tired muscles, and the thought of another full day of practice during the dog days of August, it really didn’t seem like a morning to be thankful.
Let’s look at Psalm 100.
“Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God. It is he who has made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.”
No matter what you are experiencing in today, whether it be the dread of another day of practicing in full football pads in 90 degree weather or the joy of being on a sunny beach with nothing to do except sit under your umbrella and read your favorite book, whether you face another day at a job you do not like or you begin a new job, your dream job, whether you face more chemo treatments or you just got a clean bill of health from your doctor, we want to encourage you to take time be thankful and to praise God, even if you are not in a thankful or praising mood.
Knowing that some of you reading this are facing real life challenges, and we are not minimizing those issues, we pray for a touch from God so you can say “It’s a great day to be alive!” And remember this, even if your glass if half empty, it is also half full! It is a matter of perspective.
New Bern, North Carolina