Abundant Joy

February 26, 1999
by Connie Dunwoody

Psalm 30:11-12 – You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing to you and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever. (NIV)

It's been snowing a lot more than usual in Port Alberni, British Columbia. We're a west coast Vancouver Island town, and usually we're able to be fairly smug about our balmy weather and crocuses at this time of the year. For whatever reason, the snow continues to fall.

As I walked my dog yesterday morning, and watched her reaction to the snow, it occurred to me she's got the right idea. She approaches snow as an unexpected delight. She sniffs the air, nose up, tail wagging furiously. There's one still moment while she holds herself in expectation, then she hurls herself headlong into a cloud of white, plunging into the deepest part of it as though it were there just for her amusement. She rolls, revels, glories, delights in it. She sticks her head into a snow bank just to see what's there, and comes out looking like a reverse of her black self. She's been known to tunnel through drifts too large to manoeuvre any other way. She eats it, gobbling it down with doggy enthusiasm, like some great sweet manna from heaven. She throws herself around in it with wild abandon, and comes up snorting, wagging, and laughing.

Never once does it occur to her that she has to earn the right to play in the snow. It's just there. It's a gift.

It occurs to me that we should approach God's grace with the same delight, joy and enthusiasm. We should hurl ourselves into it, roll in it, cover ourselves with it, snarf it up with great gusto and let it melt in our mouths, trickling down to the very core of us. We should delight in it, revelling and dancing with abundant joy, hooting with laughter.

Would God want us to enjoy His gift to us any other way?

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me delight in your gift of grace instead of feeling burdened by what sometimes feels like an obligation to respond. Give me the ability to dance with enthusiasm; help me to plunge into the deepest part of this sweet manna; help me accept what you give so freely. Father, encourage me to roll in an enormous drift of your love, grinning from ear to ear with wild, abundant joy. Amen.

About the author:

Connie Dunwoody
Shawnigan Lake, British Columbia, Canada

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