"When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy." Matt. 2:10 NRSV
The season of epiphany is the season of aha moments. It is the time when the magi realize who the true king is, Jesus. It is the time when the world is opened to the amazing gifts that God is bringing to us. It is the time when we our eyes are opened to God, once again, acting in our lives.
So as I was thinking about joy during this epiphany season, I started to think about joy in the "aha" moments. You know those moments, those times when you are just struck and go "aha, I got, I understand, I see."
I remember one of those aha moments from a few years ago. It was the week after Easter the year I had been diagnosed with cancer. We were going to meet Jennifer’s family in Florida. They make an annual pilgrimage to a place on the panhandle and we had gone with them a few times in the past. This year was different though, because we had decided to drive – the four of us: Jennifer, the two girls ages five and one, and myself. It was going to be an interesting trip, to say the least.
It went well. We drove through the night so that the girls could sleep in the back of the van. We tried to sleep when not driving, but that did not go quite as well. Jennifer has trouble sleeping in vehicles, and I had a mind that was racing – is this the last family vacation I will go on? How can I make it memorable? What is there for me to do in order to make this the best vacation ever?
I actually put a lot of pressure on myself, but as the drive progressed, once again I was hit by the Spirit, I was hit with that aha moment.
It doesn’t have to be the perfect vacation. It doesn’t have to be the most memorable event ever. All it has to be is what it is: a vacation with family, a time to relax, and an opportunity to spend time with people I love without the pressure of work, meetings, and doctor’s appointments.
The aha moment that gave me so much joy was the moment of celebrating that moment, that time, that blessing of family and break, and not putting so much pressure on myself and on the vacation that it turned into all stress and no fun.
So what aha moment has brought you some joy?