The Crossing Guard –
You probably think I’m going to write about important cross roads in life. Wrong, I am writing about joy. There is this friendly, with a seemingly endless supply of joy, crossing guard on my way to work each morning. I started driving by her 15 years ago on my commute and now that I have the same drive I see her every morning once again. She waves at everyone the entire shift and must have arm muscles that compare to superman at this point.
For years she has smiled and waved to every car passing by. In the rain, stiflingly heat, smog, road-rage-drivers and snot-nose kids, she waves with joy. You can feel it radiating from her. Her smile is infectious. I know she doesn’t get paid tons of money as I looked their salary up once. I wonder if she has to put her arm on ice all summer break? When it rains, she doesn’t use an umbrella – obviously it would hinder her ability to wave that arm. But regardless, she has joy in the middle of the street every morning for the entire world to see.
I can’t help but wave and smile back. Have you ever seen someone and it just fills you with joy? I wonder if people see me and think “joy?” Probably not the neighbors this morning as they watched me fuss at the kids getting into the car. Probably not when I was frustrated at my son the other day on the football field sidelines. Probably not when I am sure I did about 10 eye rolls in the Wal-Mart check out line last week.
Today I added “radiate joy” to my prayer list. I want to not only been seen as a person who exudes joy in the good and the bad, but I want to really feel joy. I am a super melodramatic person with ups and downs. I go from one moment wanting to conquer the world and try all new things to doom and despair and either think the world is coming to an end or I question my purpose. Think cartwheels then banging ones head on the door frame the next minute. Luckily, for the most part I do this in the privacy of my own home or internally. But there is always a battle to not just show joy on the outside but radiate joy inside as well.
We can tray and fake joy, but I think its one of those qualities that’s pretty transparent. I wish I had more “do this and you will radiate joy tasks” to give you today, but I don’t. All I can say is that I have added “radiate joy” to my prayer list. I know that pure joy comes from above and if I am honest with myself and my doom and despair feelings, most of the time when I lack joy is when I have isolated myself from God and the joys He has already placed in my life. They are called blessings, but many times I choose to ignore them. Blessings like food on my table every day, laughter of children in my home, finances to pay for medicine, having someone kiss me good night, encouraging friends, family close by and much more.
“Radiate joy” is now on my 30 day prayer list and will probably remain for sometime. Maybe my joy will be infectious and other’s will want to radiate joy as well. Maybe I should wave a little more, see the blessings in my life and be so very, very grateful for the wonderful joys I have already been given. Insert theme song, “Can’t stop the feeling.”
“These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.” John 15:11
30 day challenge – read more in the “hit repeat again” previous blog…
1. Write down a list of things you need to pray for
- This is not a wish list
- Try not to just make them all about you
- Keep the list small and purposeful
2. Spend at least 30 minutes in uninterrupted prayer
- A scheduled time not just throughout the day
- Ideas: 30 minute drive to work, actually getting up early, skipping a tv show, praying before bed
3. Read at least one scripture passage a day
- Pick a book of the Bible and read a passage each day
- Follow our blog for daily scripture
4. And if you fail one day out of 30 –HIT REPEAT AGAIN!