It has been a LONG while since I have written anything! This time of year always brings Zach’s passing to the forefront of my thoughts and deepest feelings. I had a sweet friend ask me recently if I relive those moments in time seven years ago. I replied, “every year!”
There is so much to try and comprehend, to try and overcome, all the while remembering to always look up and keep the faith. Recalling Zach’s death is at times extremely difficult. And yet, I feel I can see him filled with a joy I completely have no understanding of.
In reading the Book of Mormon, I have pondered Ammon’s “joy.” What would that be like to have that kind of joy? What would that be like to be filled with that kind of joy? To the point of laying prostrate on the ground?
When in my life have I been “filled” with joy?
When I was baptized, I was filled with joy. While it was a special day and moment, it cannot be compared to Ammon’s joy.
When my family was sealed in the temple, I was filled with joy. That moment in time was sacred and beautiful, but still cannot be compared to Ammon’s joy.
When I was married in the temple, I was filled with immense joy. That was an incredibly happy day. I remember smiling so much that my face began to hurt. Nevertheless, I feel it falls just short of that joy Ammon felt.
When I had each of my children, my joy thermometer was off the charts. As I held each one of these precious little beings fresh from heaven, my feelings of joy were so intense, so pure, and really beyond description. I think that those beautiful moments are probably the closest times in my life of feeling the joy Ammon must have felt.
Being an empty nester, with a child on the other side of the veil, and a Nana, how can I feel that joy I have tasted at various times in my life? Each of us NEEDS to have some sort of joy in our lives. Each of us should seek to find joy in our lives. And most of the time, we do not have to look far to find and feel it.
I think the biggest secret to finding joy is simply serving someone in need. Serving brings those desired droplets of joy to my soul. They fuel me to want to do more and to have more of those particularly sweet moments. Serving can be as simple as putting someone’s shopping cart away for them. Or, it can be purchasing someone’s groceries for them. It can be calling your eighty-one year old mother. It can be visiting family members. Serving can be taking a treat to someone who may be shut in. It can be showing up to clean someone’s home, and even making them dinner.
Where does the joy come from any of those suggestions? It comes from the woman with five children who is so grateful you are putting her grocery cart away as she tries to multitask loading children and groceries into her car. Joy comes from seeing a person’s face light up with immense gratitude as you help pay the difference she is short in the grocery check-out line. Joy comes from calling my mother, asking about her day, and letting her know how much I love her. And in turn, I feel my mother’s gratitude and love from making a simple phone call. Joy comes from visiting my children and playing with my grandchildren. I am always excited to see them, to feel of their love, and to spend time making special memories for all to remember.
As I have pondered Ammon’s joy lately, I have given deep thought as to how I will feel when I see Zach again. Joy. And I actually believe, it will be the kind of joy that Ammon felt. I do not think I will be laying prostrate on the ground, but I will be hugging him, kissing him, and crying big crocodile tears of joy when that blessed day comes.
Listen to this beautiful song "The Sweetest Gift"
This is a beautiful talk about service. Click link below
The Joy of Unselfish Service
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