How I Respond to Sadness and Happiness

Giant sequoias rising 300 feet into the blue sky; water, as clear as glass, flowing in mountain streams; California poppies, Purple vetch, Lupines, Chinese Houses, and other wild flowers blooming along the banks of the Sierra railroad; radiant smiles and spontaneous hugs from grandchildren I adore; walking and talking, playing games, taking photos, cheering for my grandson at his Little League game, the happy chatter of children seeking hidden eggs,  the grandeur and beauty of the Gospel message on Easter Sunday, roast leg of lamb and all the fixings attractively served for dinner–these were some of the joys I saw, touched, and felt last week.

Leaving family members that I love; experiencing a bit of indigestion; losing my phone and my glasses; finding, at home, letters from friends with news of an untimely death and complicated health issues; receiving a phone call from a friend who’s depressed–these were things that brought frustration, disappointment, and sadness to my soul.

Life is a mixture of sadness and gladness; in either situation, I’ve learned to respond in the following way.  Doing so results in inner stability and peace–peace that, as the Apostle Paul declares, “exceeds understanding” (NLT). 


When there’s sadness in my soul,
I compose a song of hope—
Reminding myself of this:

God is faithful and true—
A constant in times of change—
So forgiving and full of grace!

Every memory of him
Brings sweet comfort to my heart—
And my sorrow is assuaged.

When there’s sadness in my soul,
From the treasury in my mind,
I compose another verse.

For the Scriptures I’ve imbibed—
They’re my source of hope and life—
Of these truths the Spirit speaks.

And I rise above my pain;
I conquer fear and shame—
Soar beyond sadness in my soul.

When there’s gladness in my soul,
I compose a song of joy—
Reminding myself of this:

God’s the source of every good—
He deserves my gratitude—
So generous and merciful!

Every memory I have,
Of things lovely and pure,
Summons my heart to sing again.

When there’s gladness in my soul,
From the treasury in my mind,
I compose another verse.

To the Scriptures I return—
Lest I forget what I’ve learned—
That’s where I can find perspective;

I’m dependent totally
On the grace God gives to me;
He creates gladness in my soul.

4/20/2017 Jane Ault 

8 thoughts on “How I Respond to Sadness and Happiness

  1. Hi Jane-
    Thank you for your poem! The range of life experiences- often co-existing!
    I am reminded of the Scripture-

    In everything, give him thanks.

    Love and prayers have been with you!
    Donna

    • Thank you, Donna, for your comment, your love, and your prayers. I deeply appreciate your friendship and support.

  2. To every thing there is a season and a time to every purpose under heaven. Through it all God uses our experiences to shape us into the children He wants to live with Him for eternity. Some of the shaping is very difficult and painful, some is so joyful. If we only cooperate, the results will be heavenly. Debbie

    • Thank you for your comment, Debbie.As you said, God speaks to us and works in us through all of life’s experiences; he is the skillful potter; we are the hopefully responsive clay.

  3. Thank you, Jane, I needed this today. God is more than sufficient for every circumstance of our lives, whether happy or sad, our lives are a gift from our Creator. Knowing we will one day live in a perfect world with Him helps too.

    • Thank you for your comment, Sandy. Yes, it is comforting to know that someday we will live with him–tears, pain, and suffering will be forever gone.

  4. What would life be with its range of experiences without God and His faithful under-pinnings? I especially love the last verse.

    • Thanks for your comment, Judy. Life’s experiences without God are, as the writer of Ecclesiastes says, truly “meaninglessness.”

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