O give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; For His lovingkindness is everlasting. -1 Chronicles 16:34 (NASB)
You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. -Matthew 5:14-16 (NIV)
Over the Thanksgiving holiday, I showed my son the 1964 movie Mary Poppins for the first time, and it was definitely just as eye-opening for me as an adult as it was for a little boy. It wasn’t just age, but also my reborn spirit, that God used to help me connect the dots for my son as I answered his questions about the film.
Q: Why did Mary Poppins arrive with a change in the wind, and then disappear when the wind changed again?
A: Mary Poppins came at a time when the kids needed their stubborn, hard-hearted father, and then she left when his heart was changed. Her job was done.
Q: Isn’t it unhealthy to have a spoonful of sugar with medicine?
A: The song isn’t really about sugar or medicine, but is saying that our perspective can make the things we need to do much easier to swallow.
And that song, “A Spoonful of Sugar,” was the perfect connector I needed to talk about having an attitude of gratitude, Thanksgiving or not. Giving thanks to the Lord in all things, especially to start the day, can set the tone for a great day or a lousy one. And as a result, a spoonful of sugar can sweeten our witness to a jaded, cynical, complaining world.
Just as Mary Poppins brought light and cheer and triggered a change of heart in the Banks family, we believers are called to do the same in this world.