Remember Joy…

by Kelly Crawford

If I could be reminded of but one thing, (and the need of reminding is daily), it is that no day should be too busy or sad or trying that there is no room for joy.

And isn’t joy merely a state of mind and heart, not of circumstance?  Of course there’s the deep, internal joy that comes only from the Lord.  And there is also the joy that comes from training the mind to be grateful and to see the beauty of a day.

I want to hear past the noise and remember that the little voice calling me again will deepen quickly and soon call his own child’s name.

I want to feel the tiny hand touching me (though there are days I wish for one touchless hour) and remember that the hand will grow too soon to brush the cheek of her own child.

I laughed last night with my daughter–we played a game of “don’t wipe off my kisses” as she sat in my lap.  The laughter grows the soul and I think she will remember that she liked it here.

I danced with my son standing on my feet.  It was brief and sweet, his face looking up into mine.  I hope he remembers it when I’m looking up into his.

I mess up too many times in a day though.  And for that, I try all the harder to make up a harsh word with a soft one.

Let me hug longer, love deeper, listen closer to these little people.  They are not static; but men and women in the making. I am a big part of that making.

By grace, Lord, keep my days big enough for them, and do not let me be ruled by the tyranny of the urgent.  The urgent will be gone tomorrow, but so will they.

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Olivia Montgomery December 16, 2009 - 9:26 am

Thanks for the reminder Kelly. I have started a new blog…really it’s just a daily diary for me. I thought it would help hold me accountable to the things I need to get done every day and to focus on more of the important things and not focus so much on the urgent.

Jennifer December 16, 2009 - 10:10 am

Thank you! I’ve been trying to post about this is preparation for 2010. Trying to let the Lord work on me in this area.

Shannon December 16, 2009 - 10:14 am

I was just pondering these very thoughts! Thanks for the reinforcement and encouragement. Since beginning homeschooling a year ago I have become so harsh with my kids and I struggle not to be. I used to love all there cuddlles all the time and now I feel smothered, but I know it is wrong and they need the old me back….. I am trying to get the old me back… the one that is lost in the chaos of our home…. I started this journey to ENJOY it… not be miserable with it. We must FOCUS on the ENJOYING part, so we get the JOY part of that, right?!

You know it is funny because I think I look at larger families that have been homeschooling for a long term and think they have no problems and all is blissful joy all the time! (sorry… you can’t kick me over the internet)… How silly that I would think that the work load could be double or triple mine, yet the the stress level nonexistent. How naive of me. Bless you today as we all try to remember to keep our tones sweet and joyful and not harsh…. (the way God would treat us).

Lisa December 16, 2009 - 10:25 am

Reading this post brought tears to my eyes. My two youngest are now 11 and 9, and with my older three grown and married, I do realize how quickly the time goes by. You have have no idea how you spoke my own thoughts today. Thanks!

Nicole December 16, 2009 - 11:36 am

“It was brief and sweet, his face looking up into mine. I hope he remembers it when I’m looking up into his face.”

I LOVED these lines! Touched my heart. I hope the same thing, thanks for putting into words something so special.

Diane December 16, 2009 - 12:05 pm

You wrote: “training the mind to be grateful” and I think right there you have the key, dear. Gratitude brings us into right relationship with the father… and with everyone and everything else too. But so often we think that gratitude is a feeling that is pulled out of us by some wonderful thing happening to us, or some wonderful gift of some kind. It’s really just the reverse: recognizing the wonderful in the everyday can be an act of discipline… and practicing that discipline in turn brings more wonderful things into your life. yanno? (Well, I just spent a whole lotta words driveling on and on to say what you said so clearly and succinctly, lol)) Thanks for reminding me, dear friend♥

Kelly L December 16, 2009 - 12:43 pm

Kelly, this is so perfect timing! I am taking my daughter to look at all the fantastic Christmas decorations, windows, malls (we live in Las Vegas so there are plenty…) I was starting to feel a little bad because all we did is math, make peanut butter & choc covered pretzels for gifts and will spend the rest of our day doing the preceding. But she will remember it forever, the two of us (Daddy is traveling), and so will I. Thanks…no longer guilty!
You really do listen as He leads. Not just today, because it speaks to ME, but really, every time you post. Good job bringing Glory to Him!

Word Warrior December 16, 2009 - 12:45 pm


No driveling…I appreciate your expounding 😉

Word Warrior December 16, 2009 - 12:45 pm


Kirsten December 16, 2009 - 12:52 pm


I’ve been reading your blog for a little over a month now and I have been so blessed! I’m a single young woman, but your posts on motherhood and homeschooling make me yearn for a family of my own. Thank you!

Marci@OvercomingBusy December 16, 2009 - 1:01 pm

You have this knack of reading my mind! These same feelings have been flooding my heart. I want to keep them little and close. I know I can’t, so I want to make the most of this time.

Gayle December 16, 2009 - 1:01 pm

Love this post! It hits me right where I am.

I was just chatting with a dear friend this morning over this very thing. I told her that my gripey attitude seems to be dominatiing right now and I hate it. I confessed to her that I knew what needed to be done; I just have to pull up my bootstraps and choose joy!

There are so very many blessings and beautiful things to focus on throughout the day, but we have to be diligent to find them when we are out of practice! Thanks for the affirmation, today, Kelly!

Liz December 16, 2009 - 1:33 pm

Keep that old song running thru your mind “I got that joy joy joy joy down in my heart….down in my heart….” to keep on that spirit of gratitude and joyfulness. :))

Mrs. Santos December 16, 2009 - 2:32 pm

“do not let me be ruled by the tyranny of the urgent.” This is so good…There is so much more peace in my home and with my children when I ask the Lord “Lord, what is important here?” Blessings to you, we all mess up so much. Thank God for his mercy and grace that is sufficient for all our needs. Thank you also for being honest. It is good to know that I am not the only one that sometimes has to make up with many soft words for the harsh ones.

Kim M December 16, 2009 - 2:39 pm

Your post reminded me of that Billy Dean song. I am not really big into country, but I heard this once and thought it was precious.–9026061

Kim M December 16, 2009 - 3:10 pm

Regarding the song I linked above… I am sure there could be disagreements about how often kids should “sleep in the middle”, how innocent they truly are, or if they should jump on the bed (like the kids in the music video were doing.)

However I do like the general message of the song. It is a good reminder. Sorry for the disclaimer, but I figured if I didn’t you might get a bunny trail of comments. 🙂 We readers are good at that.

Word Warrior December 16, 2009 - 3:25 pm


Oh, that was such a sweet song–tears 😉

Sommer December 16, 2009 - 3:53 pm

I really needed to read this today! Thank you. I have sadly felt too many times this year no joy. And yet I have 4 beautiful children and I want to feel joy for them and for my husband.

I will strive to find the joy each day and to replace a harsh word with a gentle one!


Tricia December 16, 2009 - 4:38 pm

Beautiful thoughts, beautifully expressed.God bless you and your beautiful family. “The joy of the Lord is your strength.” (Nehemiah 8:10) “Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.” (Isaiah 12:3)

Lucy T December 16, 2009 - 9:20 pm

Beautiful and so true from a mom who now looks up at her first baby boy.

Annette December 17, 2009 - 7:45 am

I so need to be reminded of that each and every day. With a houseful of children and one due any day, and the busyness this time of year brings (small home business), I find myself too busy and preoccupied to take the time to be patient and nurturing in my dealings with my 6 youngest (all boys). I am praying that I might have a more joyful spirit and the grace and wisdom to be a better mama, esp. to my boys so full of energy and needing so much guidance at this time in their lives. Thanks for sharing. =)

Mrs. Lady Sofia December 17, 2009 - 3:49 pm

Although I don’t have children, I appreciated the main idea of the post (at least it seemed like the main idea of the post in my opinion) that as Christians, we need to find joy in our lives no matter what life circumstances bring our way.

This is often difficult with so many thoughts, ideas, values, and endless voices pulling us in so many different directions. Sometimes, it’s just hard to focus on what is important as well as to be joyful (which could be translated into the word thankful) for the many blessings that the Lord has bestowed upon us.

This post will be a challenge to me to have more joy in my life since lately, I haven’t been very joyful – too stressed about this and that. 🙁 Thanks again for your inspiring words.

Lisa in ND December 18, 2009 - 6:21 am

I *only* have 3 children but there are days I want to scream and cry with frustration (I also work full-time from home). Yesterday I found myself angry at my poor 3-year-old, who just wanted me to play with her (I was tired from very little sleep, trying to get my work done, keep up with the house stuff, etc). I took time to give her a hug, tell her I was sorry for yelling, and asked for the Lord’s forgiveness as well. I so need to remember what is REALLY important in the long run (not really a clean kitchen but time with my little one). My oldest is 19 and they really DO grow up quickly.

There really is joy in every moment.

You say things so beautifully Kelly! Your post really blessed me early this a.m. Thank you.


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