It’s always interesting to hear the reactions when we have a period of cool days during our short Michigan summer. Some are in seventh heaven, pull out their sweat shirts, stoke the bonfire and enjoy the wind blowing through their hair. Others are saddened that their vacations are ruined or it’s too cold to swim and wish for the scorching sun to return. Others just go with the flow, knowing that the heat will be back soon enough.
This could be a great metaphor for our spiritual life as well. When we feel the warmth of summer in our souls, do we act upon it? When the flame of the Holy Spirit burns within us, do we allow our souls to be caught on fire?
When we are saddened because we are in a period of waiting, and that joyful anticipation has seemingly disappeared, do we lament and wish for things to be different? Or do we live in the moment and take more time for prayer?
Or are we just floating along on a lazy river, steering neither left nor right, up nor down, just letting life take us where it may? Is this really living?
It all comes down to gratitude. If you think about it, the measure of our gratefulness is the measure of our joy. If we are thankful for the warmth and thankful for the chill and thankful for everything in between, we will find ourselves content.
And with joy-filled hearts we will be able to proclaim together with the Psalmist:
“Bless the LORD, O my soul; and all my being, bless his holy name. Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits. He pardons all your iniquities, he heals all your ills. He redeems your life from destruction, he crowns you with kindness and compassion. The LORD secures justice and the rights of all the oppressed. He has made known his ways to Moses, and his deeds to the children of Israel.”
What an amazing cascade of praise! Many of us struggle to eke out a simple “thank you.” Can you imagine your soul being so full that you could not stop expressing your gratitude?!
So let us strive to shift our thoughts to the positive, remembering all of God’s mercies and all of His blessings, and be grateful for what truly matters. It may be warm today and cold tomorrow, but God’s love is with us through it all. Thank you, Lord, for you are truly kind and merciful!
Tami Urcia grew up in Western Michigan, a middle child in a large Catholic family. She spent early young adulthood as a missionary in Mexico, studying theology and philosophy, then worked and traveled extensively before finishing her Bachelor’s Degree in Western Kentucky. She loves tackling home improvement projects, finding fun ways to keep her four boys occupied, quiet conversation with the hubby and finding unique ways to love. She works at her parish, is a guest blogger on CatholicMom.com and BlessedIsShe.net, runs her own blog at https://togetherandalways.wordpress.com and has been doing Spanish translations on the side for almost 20 years.
Feature Image Credit: Nathan Dumlao, https://unsplash.com/photos/fs_l0Xqlc90