Tuesday, October 09, 2007

"Though the sorrow may last through the night...

...The joy comes in the morning!" Trading My Sorrows.

It was a very dark, and gusty night. One of those nights when things happen. The mice were running frantically on their little wheel--the squeakity-squeak only pausing as they switched runners back and forth every few seconds. The cat was pacing, whipping her tail angrily glancing from window to door, then inexcplicably up at the ceiling, then over towards the window again, then down the hall, then back to the door...

I watched a movie and then realized I needed to take the trash out, so I gathered my garbage and made for the front door. I heard the scatter of leaves as the wind gusted again, and my hand rested on the front door lock. I turned on the porch light, strode out to the garbage can and then back in again, slamming the door behind me.

I went around the house, shutting and locking everything, and drawing curtains and closing blinds because it was one of those nights--a night when darkness was offended at being pushed away for lights, and a night when the wind whispered dire things, and brought in the eternity of hopelessness that could be mine. A night when even the creatures who usually ignore atmosphere, felt the unrest.

And I was alone.

My normal response to that kind of night is to play music, but for some reason, last night was not a night for music. I felt that to turn on a playlist would only anger the wind more, only embitter darkness further. And besides, if something tried to sneak up on me, I was more likely to hear it without music.

As I strategically turned lights on and off throughout the house, I grimly thought to myself, "This is what you get for watching too many movies!" Yet I do not patronize those movies whose sole purpose is to scare the bejeebers out of you, and as a rule, I even avoid thrillers because the suspense simply kills me. I stick with action and chick flicks.

But as I finally crawled into bed, having locked the squeaking little wheel and it's runners in another room to squeak to their hearts delight, and having allowed the cat to finally find a peace entwined around my feet at the foot of the bed, I grabbed my Bible and read a quick Pslam before turning out the light and letting darkness finally make her way into my whole house, finally welcomed and so less malicious than before, yet still with that miffed air of someone who felt they had been ignored too long.

The first verse my eyes fell on said, "The sorrow is through the night, but joy comes when it is morning." Hmm.

The cat and myself contemplated each other for a moment as my hand rested on the light switch. Her cocked head and winky eyes told me that she was through worrying until tomorrow, and that she was sure a full night of rest would put everything in perspective.

She was right.

I woke up this morning and got ready and drove to work. While on my 20 minute commute, I thought of that verse, and I saw the blue sky, and the fall leaves skipping across the roads and down gutters, and suddenly comfort and joy and peace like the kind they talk about in books flooded in on me, and I thought,

"This! This is what I live for! For days like today, with sun and color and life!"

I thought of every "glad to be alive" poem, song, and story I knew. One stuck in my head.

"I'm trading my sorrow;
I'm trading my shame;
I'm laying them down
For the joy of the Lord.
I'm trading my sickness;
I'm trading my shame;
I'm laying them down
For the joy of the Lord.
Singing yes Lord, yes Lord,
Yes, yes Lord, yes Lord
yes Lord, yes yes Lord.
Yes Lord, yes Lord
Yes, yes Lord, Amen
Though the sorrow
May last through the night
Yet joy comes in the morning.
I'm trading my weakness;
I'm trading my pain;
I'm laying them down
For the joy of the Lord."

How ironic.

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