What started as a Blue Monday, has continued as a Blue Monday week, and it doesn't look as though the storm will abate any time soon.
Then yesterday, I got to thinking: What has happened to me hasn't really happened to me. What has happened to me I did all on my own. I walked away from joy. That is, I have somehow (and I know how) abandoned the joy produced by the LORD. I have let the burdens and brokenness of the flock, and my own troubles, break me down.
Of course, the question is, how do I come back? How do I return to joy?
Well, that's not the first question, really. The first question is: Do I even want to come back? You see, I realized something else yesterday. I realized my abandonment of joy is protest for those whose lives and hearts have been wrecked by the human condition. I am protesting to GOD on their behalf:
"GOD, where are You? OK. If they have lost joy, then so have I."
If this all sounds somehow heroic, believe me it is not.
So, should I decide to end my protest; should I return to joy? Sadly, I don't think I can. I know I am too wounded. Anyway, Joy, the noun, is too passive, to amorphous. I can't really get my head around it. What I need is a verb; I need something to do. I need to rejoice.
In the midst of even the Bluest of Mondays, I can still rejoice...in the LORD. I don't know about doing it always, but I can at least do it now.
I can rejoice in all the Almighty has done around me -- the small, unnoticed divine clinches I see everyday. I can rejoice in the fact that the broken of the flock have a great shepherd -- the Christ, who gives to them daily care and life renewal. I can rejoice in the hope that this vale of blood and death and hate and greed is not the final word, in fact is not the only word to be heard now. The Christ has opened the way for a new life and a new way to live, and that, truly, is something about which I can rejoice today.