That's Amazing!

Sunday, July 29, 2012


At the beginning of December my husband and I had the incredible joy of being able to share in our 6 year old granddaughter’s first visit to Disneyland!  I was excited about the trip, but that was nothing in comparison to the very visible eagerness of our granddaughter.  On the first day in the park, her eyes got big and round as we entered the gates.  Everything was decorated for Christmas and it looked like a child’s wonderland…well, Disneyland is a child’s wonderland!  As she held onto her parent’s hands and anxiously pulled them forward, I could feel her joyful excitement to experience all Disneyland had to offer.  Her child-like enthusiasm warmed my heart and I thanked God that we got to experience this day with her.   We went on several theme rides geared toward children her age and on each one she blessed us with delighted cries of joy!  Being the sentimental sap I am, I was close to tears the whole time! (In fact, I am now!)  But one of the things that happened that has stuck with me the most is what she said following our ride through “It’s a Small World.”  As many of you know, it is a simple ride showing children from different cultures around the world dressed in traditional clothing and singing.  The ride had been renovated since the last time I had been on it and was decorated for the Christmas season.  Around each corner we were greeted with animatronic girls and boys singing not only “It’s a Small World” but also “We Wish You a Merry Christmas”.  I have to admit that it was quite a sight.  As we exited our cart and started to walk down the ramp to leave, our granddaughter exclaimed, “That was AMAZING!”  I had to chuckle because even though the ride wasn’t as high-tech as some, through our granddaughter’s eyes, it was incredible.  I loved her enthusiasm! 

As I’ve thought about that day, I’ve wondered what has happened to our passion?  It seems that as adults we are inhibited and don’t show the same level of enthusiasm as we did when we were younger.  It is strange, though, because now as an adult, I understand more fully the blessings that God has given me.  One would think that my enthusiasm would grow rather than diminish as I age.  Jesus pointed out the importance of the attitude of a child’s heart when He said, “…I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3).

What was Jesus meaning?  He was pointing out that He desired us to come before Him with the same trusting and joyful hearts as children.  Why, then, are we so often afraid to express our joy to the fullest?  Are we thinking others will think of us as undignified?  Maybe so.  But even David, a man after God’s own heart, danced before the Lord in an “undignified” manner. (2 Samuel 6:14-22).  David danced with enthusiasm for the God he loved!   

In etymology, I discovered that the word “enthusiasm” comes from the ancient Greek word “entheos” or “in-God”.  It means “divinely inspired and inhabited by the Spirit of God”.  What a blessing!  As a Christian, I have invited my Savior into my heart and so I should rejoice with enthusiasm!  I want my Father to see the unhindered appreciation for Him in everything I do!  Each day that we breathe is a gift from above.  Let’s not be “ho-hum” Christians, mechanically moving through the motions of religion.  Instead, let us celebrate our joy in the Lord with enthusiasm and let our actions show that His Grace is AMAZING!

In His Grip,




Personal Update:  My dad went home to be with the Lord on Monday evening.  His struggle on this earth is now over and he is at rest.  I am comforted to know that Dad is safe in the Shepherd's arms.  I will share more later, but I want to again thank all of you for your heartfelt prayers and concern.  Blessings to you!


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22 comments

  1. All I know is that HE is FAITHFUL...FAITHFUL...FAITHFUL....!  I trust Him to keep me stirred up and energized.  As I practice thanksgiving, the joy arises.  Thanks for a great time of sharing thru your post!  I am truly sorry for your loss.  I pray that God will fill the void with Himself.

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  2. What a wonderful post, Joan! Our church has a separate church service with contemporary music and some out-of-the-box approaches to church services--the tagline for this ministry is, "Restoring the Wonder of Jesus." I love that idea, and what you have written here is born of that same mindset. As sorry as I am for you and the loss you feel at your dad's passing, I can't help but imagine him experiencing heaven for the first time with even more joy and wonder and enthusiasm than your granddaughter at Disneyland!! Praying for you!!

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  3. Hi Joan - I know what you are saying.  It does seem that life seems to suck the joy out of you yet knowing better you'd think we'd be more joyful.  What I have seen though is those old people, plain, quiet, have lived their lives.  They don't stand in anyone's way and they don't argue or defend, BUT, look into their eyes!  Such light!  Such peace and joy from those who still serve the Lord as they age.  Great post today Joan, God bless
    Tracy

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  4. Such a good post. So sorry about your dad. Your loss, is definitely heavens gain.

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  5. Joan, I'm delighted that you posted about being enthusiastic in our relationship with God. I'm so blessed, together with our family, to be serving the Lord in Jesus Miracle Crusade Intl. Min., an apostolic church, for there's no "ho-hum" moments every time we come together to worship the Lord, and that is 3x a week, from 5-8 hours straight including overnight service (8:30pm-4:30am). I linked here "Glimpses of Glory", one of many posts I've written about the powerful moving of the Holy Spirit in our midst.

    Thank you for hosting and happy that you're back!
    Rina

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  6. Joan, I so appreciated when you wrote, "Each day that we breathe is a gift from above" made particularly poignant in the loss of your father. May God comfort you all in your grieving. Thank you for the opportunity to link up; thank you for the opportunity to read your words.
    Peace and good to you.

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  7. May God meet your every need to day as you grieve the loss of your father. May the memories you have of him be deeply embedded into your heart, so that you can say "amazing" in the midst of both your heavenly and earthly father.  His gracious love to you. 

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  8. Praying for you & your family, Joan, for the peace that passes all understanding. I love this post, and the reminder to rejoice in all things. We are so blessed to be His children, joint heirs with Christ, and even His ambassadors, yet we often take His grace for granted and are less than enthusiastic.
    Thanks for the great post & for hosting the linkup, & God bless,
    Laurie


    http://savedbygracebiblestudy.blogspot.com/



     

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  9. Many hugs sent your way on the passing of your Dad.  As for your trip, how wonderful to spend such a fabulous time with family... Keeping you in prayer. 

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  10. Hi, Joan! So true about our attitudes about God's work in our lives. It can be such a struggle for us, as adults, to be enthusiastic about serving Him. I think much if it is due to the fact that, as we experience life longer, we also have many hardships and heartaches that can pull us down. The devil is always looking for ways to oppress us, but in Christ we are more than conquerors! We must not let Satan talk us into believing his lies. So glad you were able to make some awesome memories with your granddaughter. I do love the "It's a Small World" ride!!!

    In His Lo♥e, Ann

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  11. I'm so sorry for the news about your dad.  But I'm also glad he is with the Lord.  May you be comforted by that and knowing you will see him again one day.  In the meantime though, it can be so hard as you miss him.  My thoughts and prayers are with you.

    On another topic, I'm so glad you continue to have that childlike quality.  Too many adults get so serious and stop noticing the beauty and laughter.  May we never lose that.  And how fun to see the reaction of your grandchild.

    blessings and love,
    Debbie

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  12. Sorry to hear about the loss of your father, but praise the Lord he is in heaven with Christ.  Great post!

    Encouraging Thoughts for Life

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  13. Thank you, Derrick...it has been a difficult time, but we are thankful that Dad is at peace.

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  14. Thank you for your encouraging words about my dad's passing.  I am comforted knowing that he is with the Lord and that one day we will see each other again.

    I also pray that I have a childlike faith and enthusiasm when it comes to all things concerning God!  Blessings, Joan 

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  15. You are so right...in Christ, we are more than conquerors!  Praise God!  Blessings to you!

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  16. Oh yes...I have wonderful memories of my dad!  I am so thankful for those!  Our God is amazing...

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  17. Yes, each day is a gift.  As I wake each day I open it up and see the blessings God has for me.  He is amazing!

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  18. Thanks, Denise!  I know my dad is having a great time...He loved to dance, play bridge and tell jokes...I can see him doing that now with Jesus.  =)

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  19. Thanks, Tracy!  It can be difficult to be joyful sometimes...especially when trials and tragedy come our way.  But our God is amazing and He will carry us through.  That in itself is something to be joyful for!  =)

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  20. I so like the image you gave me of my dad experiencing heaven with even more joy, wonder and enthusiasm than my granddaughter had at Disneyland!  That puts such a smile on my face...thank you!

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  21. God is so good.  Even through this difficult time, He has made his presence known and shown me wonderful things.  I am so thankful for the gift of faith and the hope God gives.  Blessings!

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