I had to go outside just in case there were talking animals in the woods (deer, moose, mouse?), or an elf or goblin, friendly ghost, a message written on a branch, or an entryway into another land. An icy world is out there, I’m actually writing this in the woods, the sound of glassy rain falling. I ate some ice off the ground but I still feel like regular me. (It might have been of medicinal or magical value.). The air is bitter on my cheeks and nose but I am warm enough everywhere else. It’s quiet but not quiet enough, I can hear dirty traffic moving too fast on the roads in the distance. But maybe that has some magic, too.

I just got done reading a book in which the character “God Emperor” continues to have his favorite soldier re-created over and over. If the man makes a mistake of some sort, he is eliminated and remade, yet he always has the awareness of his previous selves and lives. In time he becomes frustrated and angry at the God. And he’s angry because at this point life no longer has magic for him. Constantly coming back to life over and over removed the magic of living a once in a lifetime life.

I think about the concept. If I knew I had endless more days on earth, would this day hold any specific value? When you’re exhausted from living the same day over and over, or bored, what is the attraction of immortality? We know our days on earth will come to end. We know we are dust, and to dust we will return. This knowledge is bitter sweet. But longing and sadness and grief also add beauty to life. The only thing to fear is fear itself.

I thought last night, “what if….” One of my children was out and what if they didn’t come back? I recognized it for what it was, I was letting this thought create a fear in my soul. I know the truth, I have a God, a real God (not from that paperback fantasy novel I just finished), a God, a trinity Father, Son, Holy Spirit, that I learn about from a real Book, a sharp as knives set of Holy Words, that tells me not to fear. If that fearful thing happened He would be there with me and guide me through it. Like a trusting infant, I lay cradled in the arms of God. Knowing He holds me with everlasting love. Knowing that when this life is over, a new and more glorious one begins.

I can cast aside fear and go searching for magic. Thus I find myself in the woods in an ice storm thinking thinking and looking looking.

Two, three years ago I was in a dark place, and yet in my anguish I found myself writing on almost every page of my journals, “I trust God completely.” The only thing I could count on were the promises of God. Everything else was mixed up.

As one of the dear old hymns says “those who trust him wholly, find Him wholly true”. Now when I look back at my journals I remember that pain and marvel at how God worked to heal me. I’ve been able to learn so much. I’ve found an entirely new outlook on life and satisfaction with my family and husband. I found a new church family, and it’s a Methodist congregation. I grew up Baptist so yesterday was my very first Ash Wednesday. Oh how beautiful it was. When the Pastor put the ashes on my forehead he said, “Repent and believe in the gospel.” Those simple words are so beautiful they make me cry. I find myself not caring so much about the sin, but finding comfort, actual comfort in the fact that I am a sinner. We all are. In other words, I’m only human. I repent and it feels so wholesome. I’m not judged, I am understood by an all-loving and merciful Savior who very kindly saved me. I believe in the gospel because my heart burns within me telling me that this is real. I believe in the promises of God.

I’ve always enjoyed reading stories.

But I am living in the greatest story every told.

1 thought on “joy

  1. A beautiful post. thank you for sharing your journey. I wish we had a little more ritual in my church (Grace Brethren). I am so thankful for God’s love!

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