When I was much younger I had a favorite audition song entitled "Great Day." I loved the upbeat tempo and message: "When you're down and out, lift up your head and shout, there's gonna be great day. Angels in the sky promise that by and by there's gonna be a great day."
I didn't know much about being "down and out" when I was young. At this stage in my life I see how "down and out" it is possible to get. I live in this traumatic time with many people. Some are family. Some are friends. Some are members of the congregation I serve. And some are strangers, at least until they walk into my study at church.
One visitor was an older man, unemployed and disabled, a single parent to a teenager. He needed a gas card. He told me how he sometimes made money singing and playing his saxophone. I invited him to audition for me in the sanctuary. So, there the two of us were, in a dark sanctuary, he singing a song he wrote and I serving as audience and potential employer. After his audition I gave him the gas card and invited him to perform for our congregation. After a long discussion he stunned me by handing back the gas card. He said, "I'll be back for that when I come to sing in your church."
A second visitor was a tall, fit man who looked for all the world like a "success". What I found out was that he was recently "down-sized" when his position was eliminated. He was married and has seven children. But, he wasn't there asking for anything from the church. Rather, he was using his time ("all I have is time right now") to explore how he and his wife could best use their "God's Storehouse" fund. On top of their tithe to their church, this couple took extra money, bonuses or gifts, and put them in a separate account to bless people in need. They had vowed to never use it for themselves. So, though he was unemployed, he was looking to give his savings away. Rarely have I met a better example of a person who lived out his belief that, though he was presently down and out, "angels in the sky promise that by and by there's gonna be a great day."
The ultimate "great day" is going to happen when Gabriel blows his famous horn. Until then it takes a little effort on our part, and probably a shift in vision from “down” to “up”, to make a
day great. What step of faith are you willing to take today to prepare yourself to receive the promised great day?