The slight pull of my shoulders, where the sun has shooed the pale away, brings a delightful smile. A tired smile. The kind of smile only a beautiful day can bring. Today we had a special guest. Harper Suit joined our madness. Those crystal blues and curl-gone-wild hair had me laughing all day. I think what struck me most was watching Charlee with her. In the beginning, she wanted Harper to play like her. She didn't understand the age difference. To watch her change her type of play and cater to Harper as a gentle teacher has me tearing up again. She would help Harper do something and then when Harper would try it on her own and succeed Charlee would erupt in giggles and clapping. Like genuine joy. What a wonderful model for me to watch. The patience, the encouraging words, the joy in passing on what she had already mastered...guys...I just can't.
I find myself forgetting that side of Jesus. Man, He loves to show me new things. He loves when it clicks. He loves to watch me enjoy the harvest of my struggle. Most times I encourage the feelings of failure rather that seeing my progress. My prayers are cries of forgiveness instead of sharing my joy and growth. As much as I love to build up other people, I love to tear myself down. And then I remember (or rather am reminded) that, through my struggles, I can lead others. I can find joy in my pain because its leading me to great things. They are renewing a self that is strong, joyful, able.
There are definite seasons. But I am a firm believer that, IN EVERY SINGLE ONE, joy can be found. Here's to looking for it.