If you’ve never read or seen the play Our Town by Thorton Wilder, you should. I was in this play four years ago, and last night saw a college production in which a few of my friends performed. I forgot what an endearing and encouraging message this play brings to its audience.
The message is simple: While we are alive, we rarely ever realize the beauty of the world. This is such an amazing concept to explore. The play does not necessarily promote Christian beliefs, but from my personal point of view, it is totally right–God has created a world in which many of us see ugliness and take daily joys for granted. What joys do we have each moment of each day? One thing we all have in common is life. We are blessed with this gift of life to do with as we choose.
When I look around today, a beautiful Sunday in the south, it is easy to pick out all the things I take for granted. For starters, the sun, breeze, and flowers. As I write this, I am barely paying attention to the beautiful music I have playing on my computer. Or the hum of the fan keeping me cool. On a grander scale, I so often–too often–take for granted the incredible relationships in my life. I miss my parents, but I don’t call them nearly as often as I think of them. I love my friends, but I tend to talk talk and listen listen without really thanking God for the blessing they are in my life. I have beautiful friends, and a loving boyfriend, who all bring such joy that I so often ignore. I have a gorgeous home, where I can lay in the hammock, or read the paper on the front porch, or bake, or clean, or read, or write. I feel at home here for the first time since I left the only home I’ve ever known.
Mostly, I have a God who I often brush aside, even though it is He who has granted me all these blessings. Not to say the world does not bring me trouble–I seem to find plenty to worry about at any given time, issues to sort through, decisions to make. But why should I focus on these things? How much better would my life look and feel if I truly tried to aim my eyes at all this joy? Maybe if we all aimed at our joy a little more, we’d enjoy joy a lot more.