"Yes, and I used to ask him just as I did you if he was glad he
was a minister."
The man under the tree smiled a little sadly.
"Well--what did he say?"
"Oh, he always said he was, of course, but 'most always he said,
too, that he wouldn't STAY a minister a minute if 'twasn't for
the rejoicing texts."
"The--WHAT?" The Rev. Paul Ford's eyes left the leaf and gazed
wonderingly into Pollyanna's merry little face.
"Well, that's what father used to call 'em," she laughed. "Of
course the Bible didn't name 'em that. But it's all those that
begin 'Be glad in the Lord,' or 'Rejoice greatly,' or 'Shout for
joy,' and all that, you know--such a lot of 'em. Once, when
father felt specially bad, he counted 'em. There were eight
hundred of 'em."
"Yes--that told you to rejoice and be glad, you know; that's why
father named 'em the 'rejoicing texts.' "
"Oh!" There was an odd look on the minister's face. His eyes had
fallen to the words on the top paper in his hands--"But woe unto
you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!" "And so your
father--liked those 'rejoicing texts,' " he murmured.
"Oh, yes," nodded Pollyanna, emphatically. "He said he felt
better right away, that first day he thought to count 'em. He
said if God took the trouble to tell us eight hundred times to be
glad and rejoice, He must want us to do it--SOME. And father felt
ashamed that he hadn't done it more. After that, they got to be
such a comfort to him, you know, when things went wrong; when the
Ladies' Aiders got to fight--I mean, when they DIDN'T AGREE about
something," corrected Pollyanna, hastily. "Why, it was those
texts, too, father said, that made HIM think of the game--he
began with ME on the crutches--but he said 'twas the rejoicing
texts that started him on it."
"And what game might that be?" asked the minister.
"About finding something in everything to be glad about, you
know. As I said, he began with me on the crutches."