I'm having a gushing kind of gratitude kind of day. One of those days where I find myself with a goofy grin on my face for really no apparent reason. I love these days, especially when nothing in particular "caused" them. It's easy to feel happy when awesome stuff happens -- your team wins the championship, you have a sudden financial windfall, you fit into your skinny jeans or someone gives you that gift that you didn't even realize you'd been waiting for your whole life. I'm not knocking those happy moments. They're great. I actually jumped up and down with glee the other day when my first issue of Runner's World was delivered. (Obviously, it doesn't even really take that much for me.) But after those ecstatic highs there is inevitably a little bit of a let-down at some point. The crash after the sugar-high.
But no magazines were delivered today. No gifts received, no championships won. Today has been an everyday kind of day. I switched the kids' room around this weekend and have begun the chore of sorting through the clutter that accumulates, thinning out the toys, reorganizing what remains. It's been a day of folding laundry and cleaning the litter box. Of games of Candyland and puddle splashing, wild tricycle rides and a skinned knee. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for lunch and a play date in the park in the near future. As I approach midday, I haven't finished even close to all of my tasks and I don't know exactly what we're having for dinner. There have been days very nearly exactly like today in which I have felt harried, stressed, overwrought and in desperate need of a babysitter. So why the goofy grin today? I take a break in the middle of it all to ask myself this question and the answer makes my grin broaden.
Because today I am absolutely certain of God's complete and all encompassing love for me. I have been able to lay all my burdens at His feet and just bask in the light of an eternal Love. Today doesn't have to be spectacular in its circumstances; this is the day that the Lord has made and I get to just rejoice in that. He is going to take care of me. He loves me the same whether I'm "good" or not. Whether my kids eat their vegetables at dinner or if they just pig out on pizza. Whether I come up with a great master organizational plan or just dump everything back into the toy box. It doesn't matter. He is smiling at me regardless, feeling toward me the warmth of affection that I feel watching Baby Girl splashing away in her rain boots or Baby Boy riding hell-bent for leather down the sidewalk on his trike. The eternal, all-knowing, all-powerful Creator of the Universe loves me. That is something to smile about.
That is what enlightenment means to me. This is awareness. Knowing that the One who created every single thing and is aware and in charge of all of it loves you with a love that you can't even begin to contain. And when you have this knowledge, you will begin to feel it, filling you up and flowing out of you. Then you don't have to work at being "good." You just are because you are full of good. You don't have to try and love others; you would have to try not to. Perhaps best of all, you don't have to try and love yourself, because you have finally seen yourself as you are seen. Believer or non-believer -- if you are a human being you are known, loved, and accepted, completely, by a God who is nothing but pure unadulterated goodness. He sent His Son, Jesus, to show how much He loves you and to draw you closer to Him so that you might really, truly know His peace, hope and joy. I hope you know my Jesus and, if you don't, I hope you meet Him soon. Not because I want you to leave behind your wicked ways or because hellfire and brimstone await you beyond the gates. I want you to know Him because He's wonderful and He makes me smile. And everyone should feel this kind of crazy happiness, the kind that is lasting, crash-free, and overflowing.