Mary Birk’s Blog: Joy in the Morning

Who hasn’t felt it when you’ve opened your eyes in the morning? That feeling of hope, of a new chance, a new day, a new beginning?

“Weeping may spend the night,

But there is Joy in the Morning.”

The proverb seems a little dark, seeming to require suffering before happiness. We want to skip the suffering, but without it, can joy be fully appreciated? I’ll be the first to say I don’t know. I wish the suffering could be skipped, but maybe we need at least a little to recognize how precious the happy times are. Similarly, we need work to truly appreciate leisure, sickness to truly appreciate health, lean times to truly appreciate prosperous ones, loneliness to truly appreciate friends. We also need night to appreciate morning.

At our house, every morning, I see the dawning of life and light. Owls, foxes, coyotes prowl through the night in our little corner of earthly paradise, seeking their prey. They own the night. Their prey must breathe a tremendous sigh of relief when morning comes. We’ve been safe in our home all night, tucked in our comfortable beds, but awaking, I, too, feel something like relief. And I definitely feel hope. Whatever the season, the first thing I do is throw open the front door to greet the day.

In spring, I know exactly when the day arrives. I don’t need to see light through the windows, or even open my eyes. It’s announced by a dawn concert of birdsong–busy, determined, and joyful. Robins, sparrows, blue jays, finches, chickadees, and the percussion section led by woodpeckers. They don’t sing in harmony; they all have their own sheet music, but it’s still beautiful. My heart sings at their song.

I hope today you hear your heart singing. Mine is.

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