The best time I spent on Skidaway Island was with Henry. Don’t go rolling your eyes! I enjoyed the time I spent with Richard, but Henry had Richard beat by a country mile. That’s because Henry was the golf cart we rented to tour the island. I named him Henry because he looked like a Henry. He provided hours of exhilarating sightseeing at just the right pace – not too slow or not too fast.
God planted a loving measure of fun for us that day. A time to laugh; a time to be joyful! We often forget that God, who is there in our weakness, our neediness, our struggles, our headaches, is also there when we are giggling and amused. He is smiling with us as we drink in the beauty of his earth…the Spanish moss, the lazy lagoons, the wildlife that inhabits the marshes. God brings us cheer, laughter and refreshment to bless us, to renew us when we are weary, to strengthen us when we are weak, to lift our discouraged hearts, and to offer encouragement. Of course, those lofty ideas weren’t exactly what I was thinking as we tooled around the island, but they are what I am thankful for right now as I look back on the fun day with Henry.
That’s because one of my personal failings is that I reach out to God in the middle of a crisis, yet in fun, I fail to even notice, much less thank Him for the unadulterated joy He tosses in my path. Psalm 90:17 states: “Let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us.” God didn’t create the beauty in nature just for Himself. He gave it to us as a gift that we might revel in it every time we notice the gentle song of the lark, the moss swaying in the wind or the strength of a giant oak tree.
And that’s what Henry did for us – he slowed us down to a level where we could bask in the beauty of the Lord. He took us places literally off the beaten path where we could drink in the goodness of the Lord. A mechanical beast such as Henry took us to see the great expanse of nature, where we worshipped God in its beauty.
May you always seek God’s extended hand in the abundant joy that is showered in your life today. His grace is extended in gleeful laughter, His mercies are still new every morning, and His arms are always outstretched to embrace us.