Your Joy may be Full

April 4, 2012

Do you remember Eliza Doolittle singing “I could have danced all night, I could have danced all night, and still have asked for more.  I could have spread my wings and done a thousand things, I’ve never done before,” in My Fair Lady?  She is celebrating an extraordinary coming out and those beginning feelings of falling in love (I think partly with her new self).  It is one of my favorite excellent mood songs to sing.  I think it speaks to that top-of-the-world feeling that empowers us to imagine more and better things, a feeling that is certainly a gift from God.

I’m in a great mood this evening, probably for a variety of reasons all coming together.  My eleven-year-old is better after being sick for three days and no one seems to be getting sick in his place.  The trees in front of the church are absolutely gorgeous and in full bloom, making my bedroom delightful (even if I am in there to fold laundry), and directly contributing to the wonderful flowery smell outside.  I received news of an incredible blessing today AND it is Holy Week and there don’t seem to be any major problems yet.  Days like today are when it is easy to say, “God is good, all the time and all the time, God is good!”  Of course, it is not easy to say that all the time, however true it may be.

When was the last time in Jesus’ earthly life that you think he felt that way?  I doubt it was any time on Good Friday – way too much physical pain.  I doubt it was on Maundy Thursday, although he speaks of joy I don’t sense it in him as he is bequeathing it to the disciples.  In fact, all of Holy Week, including Palm Sunday, I don’t see much indication that Jesus was filled with joy and thanksgiving.  More like commitment and resignation.  Perhaps on the eve of Palm Sunday, when Jesus dines at the home of his friends Lazarus, Mary, and Martha and has his feet washed and is anointed by Mary.  Jesus seems to be cherishing the social dinner and the close companionship of his friends, as well as the great honor Mary bestows upon him.  Was that a moment in which the magnitude of his coming mission was lifted from his shoulders and he was able to be, to be joyful, and to be thankful?  We need to spend more time being – in the moment, in the blessings that we have.  We waste too much of our existence worrying over things that will never happen and chasing after things that will never be ours.  Jesus wants our joy to be full.  It is up to us to accept and cherish that.

~ Pastor Jennifer