Friday, March 25, 2011

Jonah Days vs. Julie Days…And Happiness Bubbles In Your Heart

Note: The following entry was first posted back on September 30, 2006. However, I thought it might be encouraging to revisit this little piece of writing to keep things in perspective. Even though ‘Jonah’ days come upon everyone from time to time, thank the Lord that He provides the ‘Julie’ days as well! Sometimes I just need to be reminded~


I think Anne of Green Gables coined it aptly when she referred to those days when nothing goes right as "Jonah" days! We’ve all had them at times–some more than others–but "bad" days, all the same. You know, the days when you’d rather pull the covers over your head instead of getting up out of bed. The laundry and dishes are piled high, the pipe under the kitchen sink is leaking, the house needs a good cleaning, the baby is running a temperature, you need to buy groceries, you’re out of toilet paper (!), and you ESPECIALLY don’t feel like teaching any school lessons today!

At times like this, it’s tempting to lock ourselves in the bathroom or better yet, go back to bed! But we can’t, and we don’t. We pray for grace, grace, and more grace, and we move forward…even if it’s at half-speed. We do what needs to be done, because it’s what we’ve been called to do…even when we don’t feel like it….and even when we do it out of ‘duty’ instead of joy! The Lord picks us up and carries us through the "Jonah" day (or days)…for in our weakness are we made strong…apart from Him we can do nothing! We have to look up, and eventually we do feel that joy again.

Then there are days that I will refer to as "Julie" days. These are the days when we feel like twirling around with arms outstretched (ala Julie Andrews as Maria in ‘The Sound of Music") and belting out…"The hills are alive with the sound of music…" Everything is going right. We love everybody, and they love us back! Life is good, and we are just happy to be alive! Now granted, we don’t have many ‘hills’ down here in south Georgia, but I’m sure you get the general idea! And I think that the Lord does give us "Julie" days just when we need them most…sort of like a good rain after a drought!

This morning I got up early and went for a long walk. I’m not much of a morning person by nature (especially on Saturdays), but when I do make the effort to get up and take my ‘daily constitutional’ early in the day, I find it’s always worth it! I started down the farm road towards the pond…praying and meditating on scripture. The air was cool and crisp (how did these cold mornings sneak up on me?), and the atmosphere was calm and peaceful. The cows eyed me suspiciously for a moment–then ignored me. I moved along at a brisk pace, just enjoying the beautiful morning. All was well.

As the pond came into view, I just stopped and took in the lovely scene before me. As misty clouds surround majestic mountain tops, so did the will o’ the wisp whiteness hover above the water’s surface, like steam swirling above hot coffee. It was breathtaking, and I was in awe of God’s creation and His greatness! It was definitely a "Julie" moment! But I contained myself, as I didn’t want to disturb the cows! ~LOL~ I "drank it in" (to steal another quote from Anne), then I started home.

One of my daughters described it best not long ago. As she looked at her baby brother, she said, "I can hardly stand it; it feels just like "love bubbles" welling up in my heart." I knew just what she meant, and I couldn’t have said it better myself. That’s real joy, and as I got close enough to home to see the top of the barn and the roof of the house, I felt it too. I guess you could say I felt "happiness bubbles" in my heart. I felt so blessed and content with my life and my family. Now, I’m no Pollyanna….just ask my husband and children…especially before I’ve had my first cup of coffee. But, at that moment, all I could feel was absolute joy. My heart headed home, and my feet quickly followed! I felt the Lord’s presence in a mighty way, and it was a special moment. I knew my husband and children were there at home, waiting on me…well, okay, most of the children were still asleep, but they were still there…safe, happy, and healthy. And in today’s world, that’s saying a lot! I’m very undeserving, yet so richly blessed! God is good!

I’m glad that amid the "Jonah" days, there will also be "Julie" days to refresh us and remind us that no matter what, God is there…during the good days and the bad, the happy and the sad. He will never leave us nor forsake us! I pray that your weekend will be blessed, and may "happiness bubbles" find their way into your heart today!

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