I felt like a little girl today. I don’t mean one of those times when you do something silly and think that is what a little girl would do. I truly, truly felt like a child, joyfully enjoying time with her daddy.
Joy is sometimes an elusive thing. You believe it exists, you try to figure out how to pull it into your life. It is right there, you see it, can almost touch it. You see the glow of it in the lives of other people. You come close and reach out. You nearly have it in your grasp; but then it spins and swirls, dancing just out of reach, like a feather in the wind. That is where I have been for the past few months, well, most of this year actually. Recently, I had been seeking to get that joy back; with the handicap of not knowing how I let it go in the first place. I thought if I dove deep into scripture, that would do it. I love God’s Word and love studying it. That didn’t do it. I thought deliberate prayer, more prayer, deeper prayer would surely bring it back. That didn’t do it. I thought working on relationships with others might bring it back. That did not do it either. I think I may have tried too hard, or possibly was just totally off track in thinking that it was something that I could do.
I think I have discovered the secret! After dealing with summer bronchitis for a month and a half, plus my mom’s pneumonia, I had been pretty drained and did not really have the “want to” to do much of anything. I have felt better this week than I have since the first of May. So I was more than happy to go next door and work some. My niece is in summer school, three hours away. She is staying with a friend so she only took basic clothes and food necessities. All of the rest of her things were shoved over to one corner of her bedroom. I knew with being at summer school, she would not have a lot of time to organize and get stuff ready to head back in the fall.
It was so quiet over there. It is kind of lonely since Baby Girl passed on earlier in the year. It has been a few months, but I still keep expecting to see her running, joyfully dancing around at my feet, trying her best to get a few kisses in. I have the radio over there tuned to K-Love radio. I love the programming and the positive message. I cranked it up all over the house. I was getting towels out of the dryer to fold and putting my niece’s dorm comforter in to wash.
Then back in the kitchen, I was standing there folding towels when I had the moment. I’m not sure I can even describe it. The thing I have been seeking so desperately was right there. Joy. I was enjoying the K-Love programming as I worked. The song, “How He Loves” by the David Crowder Band played. My head started that side-to-side motion. With the rhythm of that song, it just seems a natural movement. Then my shoulders joined in. I smiled and closed my eyes, just soaking in the words, “Oh how He loves us.” I hugged my arms to myself and started to sway back and forth. (Yes, there in the kitchen, all by myself!) Almost without intention, I was twirling around and dancing with my whole body, lifting my hands out and up and to my body again. That was when I realized it. My Father was there. The presence of God was so real and so strong, absolutely there with me. It just made me dance more. I don’t think I could have stopped if I tried.
I felt joy pouring into my joy-parched spirit. I felt like a little girl, dancing around her daddy, with the unfettered joy that only a child can feel. Whether you believe me or not, I could feel my Father watching me, joyfully watching me, enjoying me being His silly little girl. I felt His joy. I felt his presence. I experienced His joy. I received His joy. Here I had been seeking joy in every way that I thought I could get back to it; when really, all it took was to truly be in the presence of God and feel His love and feel His joy in me!
I read a devotion this morning called, “Through Life’s Interruptions,” by Don Moen, which was excerpted from his book, “God Will Make a Way: Discovering His Hope in Your Story.” In it he talks about Eric Liddell, who was the subject of the movie, “Chariots of Fire.” His sister was worried that he was spending too much time on running, when their plan was to enter the mission field of China together. In the film, he tells his sister, “I believe God made me for a purpose, but He also made me fast. And when I run, I feel His pleasure.” That thought stuck with me. Now that my joy was back, it made me wonder what I do in that I feel His pleasure. I don’t really know why it had to be so hard to determine. I know the thing I do for Him, that gives me pleasure, and hopefully gives Him pleasure is writing. I love reaching out to others with words. I love trying to put a smile on someone’s face, or a tender tear in their eye. I love the connection I feel with those that read, and comment on my writing. It gives me joy!
So, with all that being said, I think my massive writer’s block has been busted. When I write, from this time forward, it will be for joy and with joy. I will just picture myself dancing in the presence of my God!
“And David danced before the Lord with all his might; and David was girded with a linen ephod.” (2 Samuel 6:14)
“Praise him with the timbrel and dance: praise him with stringed instruments and organs.” (Psalm 150:4)
“His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.” (Matthew 25:21)