By Terry Frisk
The old Christian hymn “Keep on the Sunny Side” was first recorded by the Carter Family in 1928 and became the anthem of the Great Depression. Nearly one hundred years later, the lyrics still resonate during tough times. Consider the words of the second verse:
“Though the storm in its fury break today,
Crushing hopes that we cherished so dear,
Storm and cloud will in time pass away,
The sun again will shine bright and clear.”
These lyrics bring to mind the story of Jesus and his disciples crossing the Sea of Galilea:
“And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was being swamped by the waves; but he was asleep. And they went and woke him, saying, ‘Save us, Lord; we are perishing.’ And he said to them, ‘Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?’ Then he rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm.” – Matthew 8:24-26
With faith, God brings great calm to the turbulence in our lives. Lately, this has been challenging with many churches closed to public worship. We still receive the message through online worship services, but we miss gathering at church in Christian fellowship. It is easy to become anxious about staying at home and limiting contact to a small circle of people. But as the song chorus states:
“Keep on the sunny side, always on the sunny side,
Keep on the sunny side of life;
It will help us every day, it will brighten all the way,
If we keep on the sunny side of life.”
Life has changed, with many of the activities we participate in cancelled. Families with children are scrambling to figure out how to manage their jobs and care for their children. Others are out of work due to reduced demand for their services. It is difficult to stay positive when virtually everyone is impacted by the current situation. But spreading a little sunshine to everyone you encounter can be even more contagious than the coronavirus. You can brighten others’ days by lending a hand, offering kind words or even just a smile (even though it is under a mask, they can still see the smile in your eyes).
The simple act of reaching out to others is therapeutic to both you and them. Some action steps you can take include:
- Pray –When storm clouds accumulate in your mind, stop and pray. Turn your burdens over to the Lord, and He will take care of you (Psalms 55:22).
- Serve –Look for ways to serve others. Even the smallest acts of kindness can have a large impact on someone dealing with difficulties.
- Give –If you are able, give to your church or other organizations that are supporting those in need. Because there have been fewer activities to spend money on this summer, I have been able to increase my giving, which is spiritually rewarding.
- Appreciate –Show appreciation to those who have served you. Showing your gratitude will raise their spirits and encourage them to pass it on.
The song’s final verse sums it up well:
“Let us greet with a song of hope each day,
Though the moments be cloudy or fair;
Let us trust in our Savior always,
Who keepeth everyone in His care.”
So, keep on the sunny side of life, my friends. Join together and trust in God. Brighter days are ahead. Take care and may God bless!
Terry Frisk is a partner in the firm B2B CFO, providing financial advisory services to small businesses. He also counsels individuals on personal financial matters through the Cathedral of the Rockies Budget Counseling ministry. He may be contacted through e-mail at [email protected].