Psalmist is right: Joy comes in morning

By Curtis Shelburne

Sometimes — and now that I think about it, maybe most of the time — I think the little things in life are the biggest and best of all.

Oh, I know, some of the things that will one day, in the perspective of a whole life, seem really small seem pretty large right now. I’m thinking of those things that Jesus called “the cares of the world.” Those cares are weedy things that quickly grow up and choke the joy right out of your life if you let them take root. I know. And so do you.

My son’s car that I should’ve sold months ago but didn’t — too busy, ya know? — that vehicle has now blown a head gasket. I’m figuring that’s at least a $600 weed. Rats and rattletraps!

And I’ve been trying to catch up on the better part of a year’s worth of bank statements that piled up while I was impersonating a carpenter, and I see the balance shaping up, and up is not where it’s headed. Seems to me like it’s kind of crashing down at a fairly alarming rate. You’ve seen some weeds like that, right?

Those and so many other dratted and dreaded weeds aren’t, in the whole scheme of things, all that large. You’ve faced larger before and what really matters in your life hasn’t been choked out yet. You’ll soon get past these, too, and you’ll largely forget about them as the beautiful things in your life green up again. And they will.

The old Psalm writer was right, you know. “Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes in the morning.”

I figure he’d probably been working on his bank statement late at night and cursing the darkness and the red ink, and gone to bed in a bit of a snit. But then the next morning he rolled out of bed and made coffee and ventured out of his humble abode to get the morning paper.

He was probably still a bit stiff and fussy and was muttering something under his breath about how when he was a boy you had to land the thing on the porch. But when he bent down, the crisp air of a fine winter morning stopped him in his tracks, and he straightened, and he stretched, and he saw, twinkling brightly just above the outlined hill overlooking his little village, the blue fire of the morning star set like a jewel into the deep velvety blue of the crown of a new day.

One twinkle of that star chased away for awhile all his doom and gloom, and his old chariot and depressing bank statement just didn’t seem to matter much. Shoot, he had overdraft protection down at Galilee National anyway.
And he was right.

It’s nice, though unusual, when cars aren’t killing us with recurrent repairs and the ink on my bank statement is blacker than it is red. 

But the little things that I often let bug me are small indeed compared to the little blessings that God gives us that really make life precious.

A crisp winter morning.

A glimpse of that morning star.

A good book.

A warm smile.

A little “in her sleep” bark that lets you know the little brindle puppy asleep on your couch is chasing rabbits while you’re chasing check numbers.

And the reminder that chasing rabbits is probably a bunch more important in the whole scheme of things anyway. And so you go to bed, and you drink in delicious draughts of God’s precious gift of sleep, and joy really does come in the morning.

Curtis Shelburne is pastor of 16th & Ave. D. Church of Christ in Muleshoe. Contact him at