This is the day the Lord has made.
We will rejoice and be glad in it. (NLT)
In our entire life history we have never yet had a day like today. It is a unique creation, even a gift. We will never again have a day just like it. All our yesterdays have pointed towards this day, and all our tomorrows lead on from this day. Today is the only day there is. The past has gone; the future does not as yet exist.
But to see this unique day as a sort of gift from God raises concerns. This is the day I may face my former spouse in court. This is the day I may say goodbye to my children who are leaving home. This is the day I hear the bad news from the specialist and enter palliative care. This is the day my cherished job comes to an end.
So why rejoice? Because whatever the day brings, our God will be at our side. Because whatever dark shadows may fall across this day, there will also be slivers of light if we are open to discerning them.
And we can rejoice once we grasp what the word means. It does not mean being happy: constant happiness is impossible in a fallen world. It means being confident that God is good no matter how bad the day might be. We rejoice not necessarily because what happens in this day is good, but because whatever happens, God is good.
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