Pure Joy

Head thrown back, face heavenward, Isaac shrieked in delight as he soared upward.
“I ‘winging, I ‘winging,” my grandson’s words filled the air.
His belly-laughs and squeals of delight drowned out the traffic rumbling past the park.
Soon his sister climbed on a nearby swing.    

A few minutes later a teenage girl joined the two.
Laughter, accompanied by high-pitched “wees,” became a cacophony of noise which was probably heard several blocks away.
“I can almost touch that cloud,” Katrena said. She stretched her legs and pointed her toes towards the sky.
The teenager caught the vision. “I’m going to touch the one shaped like cotton candy.”

It had been life as usual before this outing to the nearby park.
Dishes, laundry, picking up toys and paying bill created a lengthy “to do” list.
A simple run to the bank led us to the park.

“Only for a few minutes,” I warned before we got out of the car. I had only crossed a few tasks off my list. “I have so much to do at home.”

Their game caused me to look up. As my eyes followed their feet, I noticed for the first time billowing large, fluffy clouds.
Back-lit by the sun, they glistened snowy white, painted on a canvas of bright blue.
My spirits soared like the swings.
My heart lightened by the children’s pure joy.
I shared their game, finding clouds shaped like a bunny, a horse, an ice cream cone and a face.

Later that evening I joined my husband on the deck swing.
Our two little ones tucked into bed, asleep as soon as their heads made contact with their pillow.
Memories of the day brought back my smile as I shared the day’s events.
“I saw joy today,” I began. “Pure joy. And I almost missed it.”

How many times have I missed it? How often, in my quest to have the toys picked up, and the house clean, have I missed the simple joys in life? Why do put so much emphasis on tasks that mean very little in the scope of their lives? I know they will never look back with fond memories of how clean the bathroom was and how neat their toys were lined up. But they will remember the trips to the park and the times I spent playing with them.

That day did not stay sunny and full of joy. As a matter of fact, their giggles quickly changed to tears and whines when it was time to go home. The supper table received a lemonade bath and World War III broke out during bath time.

I am so glad I did not miss out on this bit of pure joy, the highlight of my day.

My prayer: Heaven Father, I have a habit of placing so much emphasis on accomplishing household tasks that I become too busy to enjoy my life. Thank you for bringing these dear little ones into my life. They are teaching me to experience and see pure joy, even in the daily grind of life.

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