Rejoice in the Day

This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118: 24

Some days I can feel so blessed and go through the entire day saying little prayers of gratitude, and then others, sadly, it’s as if I hardly notice. But yesterday was one of those I could appreciate! I think I smiled all through it, and caught myself saying over and over, “Thank you, God, for the joy of this moment and for this day!”  

Our little guys were out of school, and it had been much too long since we had seen them, so we surprised them with a visit. Seeing their excited faces was just priceless, and their hugs were warm and genuine. As they get older, we know the time will come when seeing their grandparents won’t be quite as exciting, so we take advantage of every opportunity we get!

As we get older, I think we all begin to realize just how swiftly life passes by. When I see parents exasperated by their kids, I just want to say to them, “This will pass. It will go so quickly. Just embrace it and enjoy the ride!” 

I guess this is the best explanation I have for why I want to hold on to these times with our grandkids and never take a moment of them for granted. It’s rare that I, or any of us, stop long enough in our busy lives to appreciate these times as they happen, but one thing I am learning in my “older years” is that life is made up of moments in time, such as these.

Some are so sweet and amazing that you can hardly take it all in, and you don’t want them to end. You grab hold of them, take every bit of the joy out of them you can, you remember and cherish them, and you relive them in your mind over and over again. They keep you hoping for and anticipating more.

Then, there are others that are so painful that they totally change who you are forever; they scar your heart and touch your soul, and you never forget them. You may painfully revisit them just for the truth they hold, or you may try to bury them deep inside. It’s not as if we wait for more, but we know with certainty that they will come again. Life, we have learned, can be very unpredictable and often unkind. How grateful I am for a loving God who understands our feelings and loves us through these difficult times.

And then, there are the peaceful moments – the ones you spend quietly with those you love, that you spend alone in reflection, or especially those you spend with God. In prayer, meditation, reading His Word, these moments refresh your spirit, rest your weary mind, and quiet your soul. Some of these times have brought me the most peace and contentment, and I long for more.

But then, there’s the remainder of the time that fills our lives, and it seems to consist mostly of pure FLUFF – stuff that fills up our days and nights. The time passes and you never really remember how or what really happened. The days are busy with work, responsibilities, and activities, and the weeks, months and years quickly pass by. And as you reflect on them, the only things that stand out in your memory are those moments.

Those moments, especially the good ones, we live for. Our spirits long for the happiness they bring. The bad ones, as difficult as they are, may bring the realization of how valuable they can be – they can teach us and transform us into more loving and much stronger individuals for the lessons learned about the value of life. And the quiet ones, they feed our souls and give us the strength to continue.

These moments make up our days, and we are more grateful for some than others. But shouldn’t we be grateful for each one? If only we could wake each morning with gratitude for the gift of life and go to sleep rejoicing for the day we just had?

Yes, some days are hard, stressful, anxious, or even bring sadness and despair, but every day is “a day that the Lord has made” and given to us. And each one brings blessings of its own. May we always remember to cherish, and thank Him for the gift of each one.

Prayer 

Our most gracious and loving Father, we thank you for the blessings of life. Instill in us a grateful heart and help us to see all the ways we can rejoice in each new day you give us. Thank you for the families and loved ones you have placed in our lives and for the love and joy they bring. Amen

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