Thursday, March 7, 2013

Looking for the Joys

There are times when I have nothing. There is no inspiration coming my way, no thoughts; my mind is a complete blank. I don't like these times. When it comes to writing, this explains my six-years of nothing.

Although I have been writing again, I feel empty in a way. I'm happy but my heart does not sing. It sings when I have thoughts, when I have inspiration. It just beats when there is nothing. I still find pleasure in my children, my life - for the most part. Something is missing though.

When my heart sings, I like who I am, how I am. Everything is joyful, serene and pleasant. I don't yell - which my kids really, really appreciate - I don't grumble or complain. Instead I sing. I dance.  I sing my suggestions and advice, (even orders) to the kids which makes them laugh. I smile. I smile.

This is not one of those days. I've been praying that I can see the joy in life today, that I can smile. It is a matter of choice today. I remind myself to choose happiness. It isn't easier since I honestly feel like being grumpy over being happy.

This morning I woke up to a mostly cloudy day which didn't not make me smile. I was tired even though I got more sleep than normal. I think it made me more tired. Deciding to focus on finding the joy in life rather than all the many things which were making me grumpy, I grabbed my Bible.

Opening it, for some reason I turned to Romans 12. Romans 12:6-8 to be exact. "God has given each of us the ability to do certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, the prophesy whenever you can - as often as your faith is strong enough to receive a message from God. If your gift is that of serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, do a good job of teaching. If you are a preacher, see to it that your sermons are strong and helpful. If God has given you money, be generous in helping others with it. If God has given you administrative ability and put you in charge of others' work, take the responsibility seriously. Those who offer comfort to the sorrowing should do so with Christian cheer." (The Living Bible)

Being me, I cross-referenced it. (I also really love to do research!)

I Corinthians 12:8-11 says, "To one person the Spirit gives the ability to give wise advice; someone else may be especially good at studying and teaching, and this is his gift from the same Spirit. He gives special faith to another, and to someone else, the power to heal the sick. He gives power for doing miracles to some, and to others power to prophesy and preach. He gives someone else the power to know whether evil spirits are speaking through those who claim to be giving God's messages - or whether it is really the Spirit of God who is speaking. Still  another person is able to speak in languages he never learned; and others, who do not know the language either, are given power to understand what he is saying. It is the same and Holy Spirit who gives all these gifts and powers, deciding which each one of us should have."

All my life, since I was old enough to understand anyway, I have struggled to find my spiritual gift. My mother says that I have the gift of mercy. So, I looked up the definition. Webster's Dictionary defines mercy to be, "a compassion or forbearance shown especially to an offender," "lenient," and "a blessing that is an act of divine favor or compassion."

Compassion was also looked up. Webster's, of course. Compassion: sympathetic consciousness of others' distress together with a desire to alleviate it.

Well, I suppose I do care an awful lot about people. Please don't cry around me, or I will have to simply cry along with you, just because you are feeling so down, sad, angry... to cry. I can't stand to see someone cry, let alone cry alone. If you need someone to cry with, I'm your girl!

I want to make people happy, because for some reason, when I see a truly heart-felt smile, it makes my heart happy. I like my heart to be happy. Happy hearts are awesome.

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
Worship the Lord with gladness;
Come before Him with joyful songs.
Psalm 100:1-2

Along with happy hearts, I love photography. Especially taking pictures of God's earth and my family. I also love to write, especially when I'm really emotional. Is my gift to write - to share God's work in my life, or is it the gift of mercy? Can a person have more than one gift, or do we each have the ability to excel?  I'm still researching this one, and really trying to figure out my own gift. 

The sun is slowly getting ready for bed. I'd say it is in the "winding-down" stage. The boys are oddly enough, bickering in the bathroom. The dog is laying in her customary position while I am on the computer - looking at me with perky ears. (This is Bella.)

I believe one boy has started to either dance or kick box, judging by the sounds. These sounds - even the bickering(!) makes me happy. Bickering equals kids, which equal my own flesh and blood - why not be happy by bickering children, because it means you have children.

All in all, I'd say it turned out to be a pretty good day. God has blessed me with a new day, a new beginning. God has given me much to be thankful for, the good and the bad which turned out to be my focus today.

God has given you many, many blessings. Sometimes, we just need to think of each of them and list them. Look at the list you have just written and pray about them. I bet it is a longer list than you thought possible.

God's blessing to you, my friends.