When my kids were little, one of the things that used to annoy me was when one of them would be pushing my buttons in public, and I’d be visibly struggling with them, and then a stranger would walk by and say to me, “you’re going to miss it someday.”
I’d be like, miss what? Will I miss my child asking for every other item in the store? Or miss losing my focus on my list so often that it takes me double the amount of time it should? Or will I miss my other child repeatedly throwing their toy and then crying that they lost their toy?
Now that my kids are teenagers, I can officially say I miss none of these things. But, I do miss that squeal of joy when the toy re-appeared. And sometimes when my daughter comes home with exactly the right things from the store without any real prompting or direction from me, I smile with deep appreciation for all of her early awareness of what was on the shelves.
Not everything in life is worthy of praise. But somehow, in every moment of our lives, there is something that invites our delight, if only we are willing to pay attention. In the cold dark, the glory of the fall night sky. In the crowded hiking trail, the shared sense of a common experience with strangers. In the threatened democracy, the power of working together for a better world.
All of these ordinary moments of beauty in the midst of struggle are God, close in. God, whose steadfast presence reminds us we need not reach for some other world or some future time for solace or happiness or peace. Everything we need is here.
Our task is only to pay attention and tend to delight like a discipline. To practice joy as an act of resistance. And, as Mary Oliver says, to instruct ourselves over and over in joy and acclamation, praising this broken, and still beautiful world.
This is the invitation of our worship series starting October 30 and continuing throughout November. To find delight in the little things
. To experience the persistent presence of unconditional love available with each in, and out of breath, and to say yes,
and to pass it on.
Join us this Sunday for More than enough in the little things.
We do not need to strive or reach for something else, somewhere else, someone else – everything we need is here, and it is more than enough.