A lesson learned from a joy-filled Golden Retriever- make the most of every moment!
It wasn’t deep snow, just enough to cover the grass and chill the toes. But it was fun snow! I joined a few hardy souls on top of the Downs and despite the lazy wind that blew straight through us (it didn’t bother to go round) had a wonderful time. The key moment came just when I thought I’d had enough- the thought of hot soup and warm slippers was enticing- and one of the dog-owners wanted to go home at the same time.
Then he summoned his dog. Goldie was having none of it! For several minutes I watched and took photos, telling myself I couldn’t help so might as well enjoy the show.
Goldie summed up JOY with every bound, pounce, chase, woof and paw-print.
Last time I had that much fun in the snow I was about eight. Despite the abject failure of the dog obedience training, even the owner was laughing. It was infectious. Goldie’s day was PERFECT in spite of snow, wind, and the fading prospect of hot food. Goldie wanted to share the fun, beseeching everyone to play and be happy. To rejoice in being alive! In being loved!
What if we followed Goldie’s example? Not the disobedience part, but the determination to make the most of the moment, to retrieve joy even though the surroundings were frozen. How often do we let our circumstances set the tone of our mood, our outlook, even our faith?
Instead, let’s live 2021 the way Paul instructed in his letter to Philippi:
Philippians 4:4-9 (NLT) Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice! Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon. Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honourable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.
May Almighty God fill your heart with rejoicing.