JOY - #Sol 16 Day 28
My thoughts on JOY are inspired by my pastor's (S.W.) Easter Sermon. To quote, Pastor S.W., he advises that we need "to be on the lookout for joy" (S.W.).
As I near the end of my 40s and witness my father's fading memory, I work hard to be open to joy in the daily moments in my life. Often joy is buried beneath the dishes to be washed and the papers to be graded. Thinking of a joyful life is too big a plan in light of all my worries in a world where violence has unfortunately become a daily occurrence.
So, I remind myself of the wise Bible passage that advises me to turn my worries into prayers.
I have been tempted to walk and live in wary bitterness, but I would miss joy, kindness, and patience. So I have shaken off my garments of bitterness being careful not to trip over the discarded cloth surrounding my ankles. Stepping out from the puddle of bitterness, I put my hands to work ready to dig up any crumb of joy.
My son has given me so much laughter and joy. Books, good movies, food and exercise have filled me with joy. If I follow my pastor's advice, I will find joy in the soap suds as I wash dishes after a warm meal. I will find joy in a sentence, a thought written by a curious or hardworking student.
As I shared earlier, there are some days, it is hard for me to find joy (Am I whining?). After listening to my pastor's sermon today, I realize that I may have to actively look for joy just like the children hunt for hidden Easter eggs. I have to be willing to bend down, look behind bushes, dirty my fingernails and scrape dirt as I reach for joy in unexpected places. Above all, I need to take the time to look joy in the eye and smile.
No matter how tired and overwhelmed or anxious, I have to be open to uncovering hidden joy in the mundane, the obvious, the habitual, even the trying moments. My pastor reminded us all that it is our spiritual connection to God that will free us to find joy even in trying times.