Joy for TODAY

Autumn must be the most glorious of months.  I look out my window and see the green grass of summer now scattered with the brilliance of red, yellow and orange leaves. The placid geese of the summer that I encounter on my daily walk are now showing off.  They are skidding across the pond with a magnificent demonstration of splash and strength as they prepare for the long journey ahead.

A drive through the country-side holds more inspiration and beauty than the finest art gallery in the world.  The hills are ablaze with a riot of color that no human paintbrush could reveal.

If autumn is so miraculous ... then why do I dread it so much?  Why does my heart constrict in pain every time I see another leave fall to the ground and hear another goose honk its travel plans over my home?!

It’s because I cringe at the very thought that snowflakes are not too far away.  Winter is NOT my best friend ... and the thought of mountains of snow, frigid temperatures and the absence of Mr. Sunshine chills me to the bone.

I have a problem.  I have allowed my distress at the onslaught of winter to rob me of the joy of today.  And tomorrow.  And an entire season of the year!  It’s time for me to grab control of my out-of-control emotions and embrace the joy of today.

For you ... it might not be the dread of the coldest of seasons that denies you the joy of the moment but it might be something else.

Perhaps you cringe at the thought of a child preparing for college and so you cry your way through their senior year.  You sob at the last football game and forget the victories won.  You blubber through choir concerts, teachers’ conferences and packing the final sack lunches.

You might be dreading the last few days of the pre-school years and so rather than celebrate all that is ahead, you pour through baby books and wipe your tears with receiving blankets.

Perhaps you shudder when contemplating your looming retirement from a career that was fulfilling and challenging.  Rather than crafting a plan to continue valuable friendships you find yourself withdrawing from the camaraderie of the workplace into a sullen shell.

What is it with us?!  We can just be so horribly human at times!

This is what I have come to realize ... God has been to my future and it is good!  He is working every event and circumstance of my life for my highest good and His greatest glory just because I love Him.

There is not a day in life that is worth dreading or withdrawing from.  Every day is a gift ... an extraordinary gift.  There is no such thing as an “ordinary” day or even a “bad” day when you are living for a purpose greater than your own.

Whether you are shoveling snow or planting flowers ... whether you are changing diapers or waving good-bye ... whether you are up and at ‘em at the crack of dawn or can spend a leisurely morning over a cup of coffee and good book ... remind yourself that life is a gift.

Every day is a rare and priceless treasure that is meant to be valued not dreaded.  I will not waste one day.  Not one hour.  Not one minute.  I will never again take for granted the joy of a glorious day.

I am determined to live well today.  Passionately and wholeheartedly.  How about you?  Will you put away your dread ... your fear ... your anxieties ... and your regrets? Will you dive into a life that was meant to be experienced with laughter and delight?!

It is the deepest hope and prayer of my heart that you will decide that today is worth celebrating no matter what is behind you or in front of you.  And ... while you are deciding ... will you excuse me?  I need to go ...

There are some geese outside putting on a show that deserves my full attention!