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Finding Joy

Finding Joy in the Small Stuff

These days, most people are stressed. Most people are busy. Most people feel they have no time to slow down, even for just a few minutes. Even when folks are physically slowed down, mentally they are running through their to-do lists and plotting their next move. I get that feeling. I find myself sucked into the whole busy/stressed mindset often enough. There is, however, a difference I notice between myself and the average adult.

I stop to take in the small stuff.

This morning is a prime example. I woke up late and I am currently a day behind on a couple of things that I’d wanted to get done. My gut instinct was to look at the clock and dive headlong into my projects, pushing everything else in the world aside. Then, I noticed the sun coming through the back door. I stood in it for a moment, staring in fascination as small particles of dust and cat hair floated lazily through the air. I know some people would freak, they would mentally add “vacuum” and “dust” to their mental to-do list. But I just stared, thinking how interesting it was that something can so effortlessly float along that way. The sun reflecting off of dust particles can be kind of magical when you look at it right. I smiled, then decided to park myself right there, on the hardwood floor.

Sure, all the serious adults might write me off.

It probably did look odd. I was sitting partway under the kitchen table, surrounded by chairs. I was smiling, eyes shut, and cross-legged as I listened to my morning devotional. But hey, that’s where the sunspot was. Confession: I’m still more or less in the same position as I write this.

Some people would never consider this to be a good working position. Most people I know would give me an odd look and ask why I don’t use the table and chairs for their intended purpose. That’s okay. I get odd looks when I lay in the grass or show up with a hammock, too.

When you start finding and enjoying the random little things in life, you might get odd looks.

It’s not because enjoying the little things is wrong, it’s just different. People have this idea that being an adult means that you have to always have your head on the big stuff. That being an adult means that finding joy in weird things is off the table because it looks immature. If that’s your idea of adulthood, I’m not going to stop you. But be warned: I don’t plan to join you.

There is value in the small stuff.

Notice the floating dust particles. Observe the individual swirling water droplets in the steam rising off your tea. Throw yourself into the grass- smell the flowers and notice details of the itty-bitty bugs. Or don’t. I mean, that’s entirely your choice. For me, though, it’s important. It’s hard to stress about the big stuff while feeling amazed at the tiny details of planet Earth. Keeping that childlike sense of wonder is a source of endless inspiration and joy for me. Beyond that, however, the small things also remind me that God is there. He has crafted this amazing art, and I’m blessed to be part of it.

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