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"It Doesn't Have to be That Way" - - by Rev. Weldon Bares

A couple of months ago, I was driving through Alexandria. I stopped to get some coffee at McDonald’s, the drive-through. So there I was, minding my own business, carefully driving in the parking lot. Right then, coming quickly into the parking lot was an older woman driving her car, a large Cadillac SUV.

I could see her coming, so I slowed down, but she honked her horn at me, and told me to go. It wasn’t just a honk. She blared the horn at me. It was a blare, not a beep. I nodded and said “okay,” and then very clearly she pointed at me and said, “Stupid!” Stupid? What in the world did I do?

I thought about parking my car, and going inside McDonald’s to find her, and saying, “Excuse me, I want to ask you a question. Out in the parking lot, did you call me stupid? Stupid? Why? What’s the deal? Who are you to call me stupid, Mrs. Einstein?”

But of course, nothing good would come from that, so I shook my head and drove away. I prayed for that woman, and I quietly thanked God that I wasn’t married to her.

Some people today are simply unhappy and angry, and it shows all the time.

It doesn’t have to be that way. It really doesn’t. The Old Testament affirms, “The joy of the Lord is your strength.” (Nehemiah 8:10) Jesus said, “I have spoken these things to you that my joy may be in you and that your joy might be full.” (John 15:11)

So today, let’s look up. Let’s try to be a little more cheerful and friendly, even in the McDonald’s parking lot. May the joy of the Lord be our strength today.

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