Sun in the morning
When I was a senior in high school, I was part of the production of our school’s musical—Annie Get Your Gun. It’s a somewhat-whimsical story of the fictional sharpshooter Annie Oakley, taking place in the Wild West.
I played flute in the pit orchestra where we’d sit quietly during rehearsals listening to Annie or Buffalo Bill, waiting patiently for the next song to come along and our chance to chime in.
One evening, just a few weeks from opening night, the cast and orchestra seemed to be struggling a bit with coordinating our cues. Perhaps we were playing a little too quickly, or Annie was just a little late on her entry. But I’m certain we played the same piece no less than 20 times that night.
The song involved Annie singing about gratitude, her ode to a life of simplicity and being grateful for the simplest of gifts—even in the midst of hardships. Sometimes I swear I can still hear the chorus in my sleep: “I got the sun in the morning and moon at night.”
“Got no mansion, got no yacht, still I’m happy with what I’ve got… I got the sun in the morning and the moon at night. Got no checkbooks, got no banks, still I’d like to express my thanks… I got the sun in the morning and the moon at night.”
We eventually got our timing perfected and the show, of course, received critical acclaim from the high school newspaper. And though I can’t remember most of the dialogue from the musical, that refrain is forever etched in my memory.
Maybe it’s a catchy tune. It was a fun song to play. Or maybe there’s something about the repeated rehearsal of those specific words that somehow made their way into the deep recesses of my brain. On many occasions when I’m becoming a bit grouchy about my personal circumstances, this chorus somehow pops up. When I start to get frustrated that things aren’t quite going my way or that life is just down right hard…I find myself thinking quietly, “Yes… but I’ve got the sun in the morning and the moon at night and I’m alright.”
Some days, I’m quite glad that, of all songs, this is the one we played over and over and over again. There’s a gift to rehearsing gratitude. The more we practice it, the more it becomes a natural response to any particular situation. After all, scripture talks of being grateful in all circumstances and giving thanks at all times.
I’m convinced that words inform our thoughts which guide our beliefs and actions. So why not fill our minds with words of gratitude and joy? If you want, start with these: “I’ve got the sun in the morning and the moon at night.”
–Katy Warren, associate pastor