• Sara Chapple

Crabbing for Joy!

The thought of holding this little guy in my hand did not bring me joy! It brought uncertainty and fear! The idea that maybe I’d freak out, squeeze my hand and kill him! The idea that maybe he’d freak out, crawl up my arm, onto my face, claw out my eyes, plant eggs in my ears and kill me!

I’m not dramatic! You’re dramatic!

Ok. I’m dramatic. But the unknown is the unknown! Maybe I’d just scream like a little girl in front of my family while we’re surrounded by actual little girls squealing with delight as they capture and hold their sand crabs.

Either way I was unsure. But a part of me did want to do it. A part of me thought I’d regret not doing it. A part of me wanted to fully experience this night with my family on the beach searching for sand crabs!

So I did! I know, it’s a tiny “so I did”. But it felt big in the moment. And we both survived! Me and Louie. (That’s the crab’s name. duh.) I know it’s an odd little experience to pull so much out of. But so much of life is made up of odd little experience after odd little experience. To join or not to join. Participate or sit out. Take a chance. Learn something new. Or sit on the sidelines. Binge watch. Veg.

God has given us wide margins within which we should live. He gives us guardrails in scripture to help us live the best life. Within those guardrails we have lots of great choices! Loving God and living for him DOES NOT mean living a boring, stagnant life! "I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance [to the full, till it overflows]." John 10:10 AMP

Does that sound boring to anyone? Nope is the correct answer. We have more options than ever before to sit and watch. 24/7 television. Our phones, tablets, computers! It’s very tempting I know. I feel the pull the same as everyone else. And I am DEFINITELY NOT saying I don’t watch TV. I have seen every episode of Law and Order at least once, many I have seen several times and I’ll gladly see them all a few more times I am sure, thank you very much. I’m not old. You’re old. Ok I’m old.

BUT, I do exercise balance and moderation! I get out there and try new things, be random, experience life, experience JOY! Not just watch someone else experience life on a lit up screen! Part of the Journey to Joy book is going to be a companion workbook called Your Journey to Joy. In it will be prompts and ideas of things to go and experience. New things to try and see what brings you joy. You’ll get to journal how you encounter God along the way. I am SUPER excited about it!

But we don’t have to wait until then! Here is my challenge to you for this weekend (or next weekend if you’re booked up already. So popular!)

Pick one of these and go have a joyous adventure: Go find a record store. Yes, they do still exist. You might have to drive a bit but do it anyway! Take your time. Just wander around. See what you see. Don’t be in rush.

Go to a museum. There are lots of free museums in most cities. You don’t have to go to the big obvious one - although you definitely can. Try Googling “unique museums” and your city and see what comes up! My search offered a make-up museum and a bowling museum. Not in the same place though. That would be weird.

Go for a hike/walk. Go to the Google again if you are unsure. “Hiking areas” and your city will give you lots of options! Find some water and feed the ducks! (originally I said to take a loaf of bread and feed the ducks but I had this 2019 suspicion that bread was probably considered “bad” for ducks now. And a quick question to the Google, “is it bad to feed ducks bread”, confirmed my suspicions. <sigh> So, you might have to do your own search and take what’s appropriate now. I guess we killed a lot of ducks in the 80’s with all our bread.

See a show. There are tons of community theatres in most areas. Find one near you and take in the theatre! (but say it with an English accent please. Thank you.)

Or if something different popped in your mind go do that! Just have fun. Engage in what you are doing. Ask God to reveal himself in your time. Ask him for joy. When you get home journal with him about your time. What was it like? Did it bring you any joy? (it might not and that’s ok! My friend tried macramé recently and when she was done promptly threw it across the room and swore never to do it again. So, not her thing. But now she knows!) Go have a joy adventure please! And I can’t wait to hear all about it!

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