Is your life a dance for joy? Joy is not a mere feeling of happiness. We experience joy when we grow, and we grow when we live in the presence of God. It is about grasping the moments of each day and using them to grow and become a better person and about assisting others in achieving the same.
One morning, Alfred Nobel awoke to read his own obituary. Obviously a mistake, he was quite disturbed. Disturbed, for he was described simply as a dynamite king - nothing about his intentions for good. He decided to change that, and he used his fortune for peace, establishing the Nobel Peace Prize.
How do you wish to be remembered? The last act our Lord performed before his passion was to wash the feet of his disciples. He wished to be remembered as a servant.
Can I do better than that? As his followers, we are to wash each others' feet. We are to serve others.
Can you think of a way to be a servant to the Lord? Do something for someone else. It is a great way to be remembered. We may not have the gift of healing, prophecy, or even knowing the Bible that well, but we can serve others.
One way that's easy to overlook is that Jesus welcomed everybody. Jesus spent time with the rich and the poor, the young and the old, saintly people and known sinners. He was always eating with people; he loved a good meal and conversation. In Jesus' acceptance of every person, many people saw a sign of the Kingdom of God.
In fact, Jesus made a special effort to reach out to individuals whom "respectable" people shunned. A wonderful example is the story of the women at the well (Jn 4:1-42). Reach out and see the face of Jesus in someone in need.
Life is meant to be a dance for joy. To begin: Smile, say less and listen more, pray, and trust God to lead you in your dance for joy.
- Shari Petree is the youth minister at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Tonganoxie.