“A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.”
How much different might our lives look on a daily basis if we made a conscious decision to enjoy the simple pleasures around us? If we chose to give God our worries and concerns and to focus instead on the blessings that He has already given us?
My husband was out of town for work, so last night my boys and I were at a local park (pretty much a daily occurrence for us when the snow is gone!). Crunched up inside a small plastic playground tube, a tube not designed for a Mom to play in, I couldn’t help but laugh as I watched my 17-month old, Jude. Oblivious to the fact that it was April and he was still bundled up in his winter hat and jacket, or that the older kids on the soccer field had relegated us to the play equipment, he couldn’t help but squeal, laugh, and clap his chubby little hands. He was in a plastic tube with a ball – what could be better?
As I reflected on this, I thought about how he overflows with joy in simple pleasures on a daily basis. Give him a ball and his oh so pudgy, wobbly little legs will kick it around the house for hours; let him have a balloon to toss in the air and catch – heaven! Allow him to see a glimpse of the neighbor’s dog out in the yard and he can’t press his chubby little cheeks against the glass doors fast enough! Pure joy!
While Jude doesn’t exactly have adult size problems to keep him from experiencing joy in the small things, in reality none of us should. God invites us to give our burdens to Him. While I fully realize this is easier said than done and struggle with it myself, why is it that so often we refuse to take God up on His offer? Consider the following verses:
Psalm 55:22 “Give your burdens to the LORD, and he will take care of you…”
1 Peter 5:7 “Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.”
Matthew 11:28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
Philippians 4:6-7 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
With these verses in mind, let’s purpose today to give our worries and cares to God. Let’s make a conscious decision to choose joy. To choose to appreciate and give thanks for the simple pleasures in life and the blessings God has already given us.
What worries are you going to give God today? Conversely, what simple pleasure will you take the time to intentionally enjoy and give thanks for? Don’t let life pass you by, chose to experience joy in the journey!