Men Are That They Might Have Joy

I haven’t blogged for almost a month!  

I’m not going to make any apologies though…

This past month has been full of inward reflection as my extended family and I experienced the death of my niece, Gracia.  This, along with five other tragic deaths in the past five months of our friends and family, I had to take a step back from this blog out of respect.  Respect for the precious time I have with my own family.  Respect of the blog my sister created about Gracia’s life.  Respect to the truly important things and people of this world.

I recorded this video of my two year old about a week ago:

The day was cold, windy but sunny.  He was playing outside by himself and as I peeked out the window to check on him, he had the biggest smile on his face scooting around in circles with one foot.

As I joined him outside, the challenges that I was facing and those of my loved ones came to my mind.  We all have trials.  We all make mistakes.  We have heartache and suffering.  Yet, men are on earth to have joy.

Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy.

The pain we feel while going through a hardship gives us the opportunity to know what joy feels like.  It’s easy to succumb to the awfulness of a situation.  My son could have felt frustrated that he could only pedal the bike in a circle.  He could have felt lonely or cold or inferior to others who could ride a trike better than he could.  Instead, he was so happy about what he could accomplish.  He enjoyed the ride that he was on.

So, this parable of the trike has entered into my thoughts.  We know our life isn’t going to be all roses but we still dislike the thorns that come and that’s ok.  It’s ok to be sad, frustrated, angry.  But then we need to turn our attention to enjoy the ride the best we can.  Focus on what we can learn, how we can change and (perhaps most importantly) the joy that is in our life- not the imagined happiness if circumstances that we can’t control were different.

I know there are many people who have been touched by tragedy, especially with the recent Connecticut school shooting.  We may feel like we’re out here by ourselves in the cold barely touching the ground to just move in circles but the sun is shining.  The wind feels nice against our cheeks.  We have someone cheering us on.  And just yesterday we couldn’t move at all…

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