Gratitude for Ungrateful Days
From Every Day Deserves A Chance by Max Lucado
Excerpts from the diary of a dog:
8:00 a.m. Oh boy, dog food – my favorite.
9:30 a.m. Oh boy, a car ride – my favorite.
9:40 a.m. Oh boy, a walk – my favorite.
10:30 a.m. Oh boy, another car ride – my favorite.
11:30 a.m. Oh boy, more dog food – my favorite.
12:00 p.m. Oh boy, the kids – my favorite.
1:00 p.m. Oh boy, the yard – my favorite.
4:00 p.m. Oh boy, the kids again – my favorite.
5:00 p.m. Oh boy, dog food again – my favorite.
5:30 p.m. Oh boy, Mom – my favorite.
6:00 p.m. Oh boy, playing ball – my favorite.
8:30 p.m. Oh boy, sleeping in my master’s bed – my favorite.
Excerpts from the diary of a cat:
Day 283 of my captivity. My captors continue to taunt me with bizarre little dangling objects. They dine lavishly on fresh meat while I’m forced to eat dry cereal. I’m sustained by the hope of escape and the mild satisfaction I derive from ruining a few pieces of furniture. Tomorrow I may eat another houseplant. I attempted to kill my captors this morning by weaving through their walking feet. Nearly succeeded. Must try this strategy at the top of the stairs. Seeking to disgust and repulse these vile oppressors, I once again induced myself to vomit on their favorite chair. Must try this on their bed. To display my diabolical disposition, I decapitated a mouse and deposited the headless body on their kitchen floor. They only cooed and condescended, patting my head and calling me a “strong little kitty.” Hmm – not working according to plan. During a gathering of their accomplices, they placed me in solitary confinement. I overheard that my confinement was due to my power of allergies. Must learn what this means and how to use it to my advantage.
I am convinced the other household captives are flunkies, perhaps snitches. The dog is routinely released and seems naively happy to return. He is, no doubt, a half-wit. The bird speaks with the humans regularly. Must be an informant. I am certain he reports my every move. Due to his current placement in the metal cage, his safety is assured, but I can wait. It is only a matter of time. ((Adapted from Rick Archley, “When We All Get to Heaven” (sermon, Richland Hills Church of Christ, North Richland Hills, TX, May 25, 2005). Original source unknown.)
The day of a dog. The day of a cat. One content, the other conniving. One at peace, the other at war. One grateful, the other grumpy. Same house. Same circumstances. Same master. Yet two entirely different attitudes.
Which diary reads more like yours? Were your private thoughts made public, how often would the phrase “Oh boy, my favorite” appear?
“Oh boy, sunup – my favorite.”
“Oh boy, breakfast – my favorite.”
“Oh boy, traffic jam – my favorite.”
“Oh boy, vacuuming – my favorite.”
“Oh boy, root canal – my favorite.”
Well, not even a dog would relish the root canal. But wouldn’t we like to relish more of our day? We can. Begin with God’s grace. As we accept his forgiveness, our day of gripes and groans becomes a day of gratitude.