Jan 6th 2014
Once, while visiting Peru, I had the privilege of attending Sunday Mass at Iglesia San Pedro Apostolo in Cuzco, a town in the Sacred Valley. The service began at 11am with prayer and hymns. The sanctuary was partially filled with worshippers from the local community, including a fair number of young people. All the hymns were offered in a reverential, but subdued tone. It was not exactly a spirited song service.
But twenty minutes into the service, something changed. A woman arrived, obviously a regular, and took a seat near the front, near the choir. When the next hymn began, she sang louder than all the rest, raising her voice with obvious conviction and joy. I can’t say that she sang every note on key, but it didn’t matter. It was her spirit and her attitude that mattered. And her joy was positively contagious. Everyone around her sang louder, with more enthusiasm, and more joy. And the service took on an entirely different tone and mood. Just because one woman brought joy with her.
Sometimes our lives, our work places, our families are like that worship service. Just going through the motions, doing things cause you have to, out of obligation. But here’s a remedy: the Scripture says “Make a joyful noise!”
This week, why not decide to be the joy? to bring the joy? To smile instead of frown. To see the glass half full instead of half empty. To find the good and praise it. You’ll find that, just like that woman in that small church, your joy will be contagious!