Joy Abounding

I know I am sleeping, only because I know I went to bed to do just that. Actually everyone in the house did. so I know I am sleeping but I keep hearing this noise. So I reluctantly release the hold I have on the peaceful slumber I was in. There is a thwap, thwap, thwap sound followed by a small scratch of medal. My alarm goes off at this moment and I realize if I don’t protect myself quickly I will soon be mauled by the very creature that is making the sounds. So I prepare myself as a white ball of energy jumps up onto the bed from the kennel she was previously enclosed in.

in this same moment I realize I am being held down by a ball that is heavy enough to keep me from moving and warm enough that I realize I don’t want to move. My dog Jorj could care less that he is inconveniencing me with the weight of his body on my legs. When we starting out going to bed he claimed his spot right away up against my legs. He has pure joy being under the comforter up against my hubby or I. He knows he is loved and has the “spot of honor” while his silly little sister has to be kenneled.

You know when you put oil and water together, it looks as if it will mix but then it doesn’t? This is how I would describe every morning since we got our dog Charlie. Joy comes in different forms, it doesn’t always show bubbly and playful, and it’s not always calm and snuggled in. But when you mix it up it doesn’t separate, it just is joy. The funniest thing to watch is when Charlie is first let out of her kennel, she grabs whatever toy is available and then tries to get up on the bed. She has the jumping ability, and does it often, but it’s the ability to get up without disturbing Jorj that she has to figure out. We have hardwood floors with a rug at the foot of the bed, this is where the traction is to jump up. The foot of the bed is where Jorj loves to lie which prevents Charlie’s attempt at jumping. Most days she doesn’t care, she just jumps, he growls and she proceeds to mom and dad where she knows she will be received at least with pets. Other times she waits for dear old dad to lift her up on his side of the bed so that she can prance around like she did it herself, in the process thwacking whoever is in her path with the deadly tail. Joy Abounding

I want joy abounding, but it is not as easy as it looks. If I were a year old “puppy” without a care in the world it would be so much easier. I am not though, I am a momma, wife, friend, and work which means I have co-workers. I have what most people have, and I am thankful for it. There are so many variables that contend for my attention in the different aspects of my life, and I would love to say I maintain a certain amount of bubbly joy in each of those but that would be exhausting. Even my Charlie dog quiets down and even goes back to sleep after being let out. This is why I love that joy comes in different levels and flavors. Abounding joy is deep down. It may not always be felt, but that’s ok, it’s not an emotion but rather a way of life. Pure joy comes from above, from Christ. It’s like a spring that never goes dry. We have to remember to drink from it though.

Life isn’t easy, and we were never told it would be. My Charlie dog doesn’t exactly like that every night she is put in her kennel while our Jorj dog gets to be on the bed, but she does it anyways. She is “stuck” until morning, but man when morning comes she is so excited. My Jorj dog doesn’t necessarily like that we added our Charlie dog to the family, but when they start playing together he loves having another dog to play with. Our family doesn’t always get along, it’s not easy with dad jokes, two teen girls, a son who thinks he really did get raised in a barn and of course me who feels the need to clean all the time. We love each other though, we are learning and growing. We tolerate and move forward. We don’t always have the enthusiastic joy of Charlie dog and her toy, but there is a deep down joy. There are days that I am like Charlie dog, the joy just bounces around and it can be felt by everyone around me. Then there are days that I rely solely on that joy (Christ) to get me through the day. It’s on those days I am so thankful that I don’t have to do it on my own. Until next time:

When God wanted to create fish, He spoke to the sea. When God wanted to create trees, He spoke to the earth. But when God wanted to create man, He turned to Himself.

Then God said: “Let us make man in our image and in our likeness”.

Note:

If you take a fish out of the water it will die; and when you remove a tree from soil, it will also die.

Likewise, when man is disconnected from God, he dies.

God is our natural environment. We were created to live in His presence. We have to be connected to Him because it is only in Him that life exists.

Water without fish is still water, but fish without water is nothing.

Unknown

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