Today, as I pulled into my parking space at work, the rain came and began to pour. I carefully covered up my satchel since it had my computer in it, and walked to the building, getting pretty wet. You know, I enjoyed the rain. Do you ever enjoy the rain? Sometimes it feels so nice, sounds so pleasant. Is it not good to be alive?
This morning I was remembering recent years, especially some special days when I was in Romania. A year ago today, friends were visiting us there and the Lord told us to “be ready” in the morning. During breakfast we got a call that a foster girl had nowhere to go, and we began a wonderful week of full-time child-sitting. The year before, on this same day, M. and I got engaged to be married, while hiking in the mountains. Have I told you how wonderful our marriage is? It is a great delight!
Now the sun is out and reflecting off the roses. When it is like this, it is hard to remember the rain and the pain of days gone by. Somehow, so many of those challenges fade into the fond memories of delight and blessing.
Just last Saturday, for example, we had a small emergency when I accidentally stabbed my wrist with a steak knife. A call to 911 and five stitches later, it has become a memory. Though not a pleasant experience by any means, I hardly recall the pain as the Lord heals my wrist quickly and beautifully.
Unfortunately, I was unable to finish this post yesterday, so now it is June 19th, again at my lunch break. It has been a pretty good day so far, with a mix of good and sad. For example, I had to do some reading for work, and I was able to take it outside and spend an half-hour reading in the gorgeous June weather. The trees and flowers and breeze seem so full of life! On the other hand, I was surprised to hear that a certain resident had passed away last night, and another will likely die today. In my work with elderly persons, people die nearly every week, if not every day.
So much of life is perspective. It makes all the different when you are working at your job. It makes all the difference in your marriage. It makes all the difference in how you process the news you hear. It makes all the difference when your light switch breaks. What is your perspective? How can we change our perspectives when necessary?
I have been asking myself this a lot lately in relation to living a life of joy and fullness and peace. Life necessarily includes work. Life on this earth comes with pain and death. How do we take it all in stride without hardening our hearts or withdrawing from the difficulties around us?
What does true joy look like?
I have an idea, but this time, I am not going to answer that for you. Enjoy!