Some of our childhood memories are so clear in our minds. The other day, I was reminded of that hour after school when the older of my two brothers and I were home alone. We’d unlock the door, drop our things on the floor, and head straight for the kitchen. As I prepared a snack for my children the other afternoon, I thought of Jared and I preparing cinnamon toast for our TV time. A hunk of butter would be thrown in a bowl with cinnamon poured on top. It’s surprising we didn’t burn the house down, as we’d melt that while getting our cartoons set up. When Mom and Dad came home a short time later, our attention would turn to dinnertime and homework. For part of the afternoon though, we delighted in little things such as toast and superhero cartoons.
In what – or whom – do you delight? In Psalm 149, we read that the Lord delights in his people – in us! He “takes pleasure in his people,” and the psalmist exhorts us to likewise praise him with dancing, with tambourine, and with song. And not only are we to be creative, but we are to praise him with new songs and “… in the assembly of the faithful.” At home, at school, at work, and in our church we are to turn to God with our praises.
This memory I had the other day was a gift. Cinnamon toast with my brother – a simpler time, a time of small delights as a child – is one of my “grateful centers,” what the author Sue Monk Kidd calls a place where we are free from compulsions, concerns, and preoccupations. We are able to celebrate the gifts that we have, the gracious gifts we have received from our Creator. Lent begins this month, and as we prepare to celebrate the resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ, may we take time to delight in the Lord and in the blessings we receive by him each and every day.