The power of spontaneous joy

Children make our world better in so many ways, often when we least expect it.

Moments after we had settled into the pews at our church yesterday morning, a young man rose from his seat in the first row of the sanctuary’s side section, turned to face the Bronze Voices bell choir arranged on an elevated space behind the last row of seats. The instant he raised his baton to conduct the group, his children, two little girls who appeared to be about three and a year old, spontaneously leapt to their feet and began to dance joyfully to the music, waving their arms, twirling freely about the open space front and center, between the congregation and the raised chancel area.

A few appreciative chuckles arose, catching the attention of others whose minds were elsewhere, filled with private thoughts not yet focused on worship. The sisters, faces filled with joy, danced on. Their daddy, involved in his task of leading the bell choir through Cynthia Dobrinski’s complex and beautiful arrangement of “Be Thou My Vision,” couldn’t break his concentration to corral his exuberant offspring.

The girls continued their dance, full of childlike innocence, smiling, twirling, now capturing the rapt attention and brightening the spirits of everyone in the room. The music ended, and the older child gently guided her younger sister back to their seats, where they sat quietly next to their father.

The congregation rose for the invocation and opening hymn, beaming faces, filled with anticipation, now seeing things through a child’s eyes. Two sweet children had sent a charge through the large room, refreshing the air and reminding everyone present that few things in life are more beautiful than the innocence of childhood and its freedom to express joy.




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