“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (I Thessalonians 5:16-18)
A farmer came to town and asked the owner of a restaurant if he could use a million frog legs. The proprietor asked where he could find so many frogs. “I’ve got a pond at home just full of them,” the farmer replied. “They drive me crazy night and day.” After they made an agreement for several hundred frogs, the farmer went back home. He came back a week later with two scrawny frogs and a foolish look on his face. “I guess I was wrong,” he stammered. “There were just two frogs in the pond, but they sure were making a lot of noise!”
Can you identify with that farmer who was going “crazy” with his big problem? I can! Life can be frustrating and so full of croaking noises that we respond like the farmer and suggest the world is about to explode. Yet, like the farmer who honestly looked into his problem, we should be able to discern that the noises we hear are not as monumental as we first think.
Listen to what Lord has said to a group of Christians who were facing much trouble and trial in life, “Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances”. In the midst of a difficult world and life, we don’t hear words of despair and frustration from the Lord in these words. Instead the word of our Lord is to ask His children to find hope in each day. Somehow and in some way the Lord has challenged us to find in our day: A continual outpouring of Joy, a day filled with Prayer, and Thanksgiving in our spirit in and through the day. Evidently, the Lord doesn’t want us to focus on the frogs of life that have more croak than substance. Instead, the substance of life is God’s presence and His goodness in our lives and in our days, always. That’s why Lord challenges us, “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable –if anything is excellent or praiseworthy –think about such things.” (Philippians 4:8) It is as though the Lord is saying, “Forget about the puny frogs that croak the ugly noises – ignore them – they are nothing compared to the joy and hope we have each day living for Jesus.