I've had the privilege of watching two small souls learn how to walk. The ginger steps, hands searching space, and cowboy stance are all accompanied by eyes lit up with both joy and wonder. Eli has been practicing his skills since Thanksgiving and still he delights in his new found mobility. He used to be content to cuddle (at least for short moments), but even these short times are shrunk to short hugs and then away he goes. He is a child on the move, ready to explore even when his explorations result in pain. He bounds into walls, cries briefly and is compelled to run almost immediately. There have been so many times I've watched this child face plant into corners, tile, and Isaiah. Yet he always insists there is more to explore as he wriggles from my comforting arms. For him the joy far outweighs the pain.
How I wish that I had more of his joyful persistence. How many times have I given up because I've allowed the pain to make me forget the joy? How many friendships have I allowed to slowly dissolve? How many opportunities have I missed because of fear of pain? Lord make me more like Eli, help me find the joy in the stumbles of this life.