Joy in the Present

“We should make the most of what God gives, both the bounty and the capacity to enjoy it, accepting what’s given and delighting in the work. It’s God’s gift! God deals out joy in the present, the now.”

Ecclesiastes 5:19-20

Last Friday I flew to Boston to visit my son. As the plane landed, rain poured down–in buckets–on the already puddled concrete.  Gray, damp, windy, and cold.  I took a cab to my hotel, called my son, and headed out on foot, with not-so-terrific directions, toward my son’s apartment.

I didn’t have an umbrella, just my wool gabardine coat with a hood. The rain poured down as I headed out on a just-under-a-mile walk to my son’s place.  But, instead of turning left on the main street toward his apartment, I turned right.  And, I had five blocks ticked off on the route before I realized I needed to turn around.

By the time I reached my son’s apartment, I was soaked. But the rain and cold–soaked through–didn’t matter.  I was here with my son who I hadn’t seen in almost four months.  And, I knew we only had a few days to catch up.

From his apartment, we headed out on foot toward the subway. More rain. More wind.  And me, trying to figure out how to use the subway card.  We had dinner at a place that serves food but is also a book store.  A place my son frequents.  This was his city, his life, and he was sharing it with me.

At the end of the evening, we again headed out into the rain. A small puddle about 8 inches across had formed on the floor where my coat hung over the back of a chair.  The sleeves were heavy and dripped with water.  But, I pulled it on, and off we went.

That evening, alone in my hotel, finally in dry, warm clothes, I smiled. The rain and wet and cold hadn’t mattered.  It could have.  After all, by the time I got back to my hotel, all of my clothes were soaked.  And, I was cold.

But, I felt content. Grateful for the time with my son. Grateful to see he was well and happy and growing into a young adult.

God gave me joy in the present, the here and now. Unhampered by the gray and wet and cold. Undistorted by the wind.  I felt grateful for the time with my son and for the capacity to enjoy it.

Too often I forget to find joy in the present. Too often I fail in my capacity to enjoy the short moments with people I care about–because I let little things distract me.  I need to make the most of what God gives. To find joy in the present–whatever the present looks like.


Posted on April 17, 2010, in Christianity, family, God, Grace, Joy, love and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Sounds like a wonderful – if a bit wet – trip. Welcome home.

  2. Linda – It was a great trip. Soaking wet the first day, but dry the rest. I loved Boston…at least to visit. — Godspeed, Elizabeth

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