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 

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