faithbook A message for quiet meditation
by JAN FARROW, Lay Reader at Holy Epiphany
Spring Joy Time
Mopsy dog, like many of our pets, is feeling a little jaded with lockdown. We took her out to play ball in the garden today for the first time this year - much squeals of delight and frantic dashing about signalled her joy until she finally collapsed in a happy heap quite worn out, as did we.
Somehow life has seemed rather joyless lately, and I keep looking at our planned holiday in September, although still some way off. Isn’t it wonderful though, crocuses, snowdrops and daffodils are all now making an appearance, harbingers of Spring. Oh how we all long for the release of Summer this year. As I began writing this, I started to wonder if Jesus ever went on holiday; there certainly isn’t any record of him having done so. But that’s not to say he didn’t believe in rest and relaxation - even God rested after he finished creation.
I have just been reading a book on Joy by the RC nun, sister Wendy. You may have seen her on television, she was a wonderful art historian who would commentate on works of art both spiritually and historically; sadly she died a couple of years ago. I am reading her little book all about Joy. ‘Joy’ she says, ‘is not a constant condition. Most people manage a settled cheerfulness, but this, however admirable, has nothing to do with joy, which flashes suddenly upon our darkness. Joy not only illuminates our interior landscape but transforms it. The world becomes different, marvellous and unique’.
This last week saw Rosie, Mopsy and myself walking along the beach from Bournemouth to Boscombe. The sun was high in the sky which was a brilliant blue, not a cloud in sight. The day was made even more joyful because we were forecast snow and ice, so this wonderful day was totally unexpected. We each I think felt transformed, suddenly life looked a lot different, brighter, more hopeful. Certainly Mopsy pranced and danced from beginning to end. I have heard it said that Joy can be defined as a dancing heart.