Find Joy

On Sunday morning, after Holy Communion class, I attentively listened to a catechist who works at a clinic. She started saying, “Carmen, this week was a nightmare. We feel exhausted. There are nurses working 7 days a week. They never rest and we are tired. Before, we would receive one person with the virus in one week. Now, we are getting up to 10. Sometimes even more per day.” Her breaking voice broke my heart. I kept asking myself what I could do for her and I realized there was not much I could do. Yet, I sat there and listened to her. She needed someone to talk to. She needed someone to listen to her at that moment and that was what I was going to do. 

After our heartbreaking conversation, I needed fresh air, so I decided to go for a walk. As I was going out, I saw one of the sisters walking by the school. I caught up with her and we walked for a few minutes before she went back to the house; I decided to walk a little bit longer. I took a different route and went for my favorite street. This street has a tree in the middle of the road. There are plenty of trees around, but this tree is so fascinating to me. It’s full of life. It looks like those professional pictures taken trees we only see in magazines.

The day was perfect. The sun was out, but it was not hot. The breeze blowing on my face reminded me of Colors of the Wind. It was the perfect weather for a walk. The birds were chirping. The squirrels were running. It was beautiful! I was walking through the riches of the earth. I kept admiring God’s creation and that is when I saw the beautiful tree. I smelled the air and smiled; someone was getting ready for a cookout. I was contemplating and admiring God’s creation when I heard branches moving. I wanted to look up, but I was a little scared to see something I did not want to see like the owl that once tried to attack us. I kept walking and I felt something on my head. To my surprise, it was the creation of one of God’s creatures. It was on my head, glasses, and watch. All I was able to say was, “Oh, yes! The beauty of God’s creation.” I laughed and remembered that God has a sense of humor. 

On this Sunday morning, I realized some things. We keep getting bombarded with the news of the world and of our personal circles. We sense and see the grief in the restless hearts that surround us. It is difficult not feel restless when there are so many things happening. Over the past few months, as a society, we have gone through a lot. We are beaten and broken. We need healing. We need hope and joy. As we continue ordinary time, let us reflect on Jesus’ public ministry and what we are called to do for our brothers and sisters that need us. This is how we can live the life of Christ.

During this time of grief and uncertainty, God invites us to bring hope and share His gift of joy to others. We might even be called to transformation during this pandemic with the words from Ps 46:10 “Be still and know that I am God.” Take a moment to pause and breathe. Keep bringing hope by continuing to be present to others and lending them an ear. Reach out to others and continue to check on our family and friends and inviting them for a virtual game, movie, or karaoke night. Enjoy each other’s company like that morning when I enjoyed my company with creation. Find joy in a delicious grilled cheese sandwich. Read a book. Stand up and invite others to dance. Turn on the speaker and sing your favorite song. We all need a moment of joy at this time.