I'm not quoting the Christmas carol; I'm reflecting on a news story I heard on the radio this morning about "Milestones at the Opposite Ends of Life." The reporter was talking about the accomplishments of the oldest man on record (officially, 114 years old), and contrasting them to those of her young children. She said,
"There is a sweetness to these early victories that I wonder if you ever really recapture late in life. I mean, for pure joy, does it ever get any better than the day you learn to ride a bike? The day you hit your first home run in a little league game?"
I can think of a few times in my adult life when I stepped (or was pushed) out of my comfort zone to try something new, and felt that same euphoria that comes with learning to ride a bike. For example, the first time I went white water rafting, or snorkeling, or read from the Torah, or drumming on New Year's Eve (which I was not very good at but didn't care).
For kids, so many things are new and unfamiliar that there are many opportunities to experience victorious delight. Maybe adults need to be reminded occasionally to take a risk and try something new in order to taste the sweetness of triumphant joy.
Can you think of a risk (however big or small) you've taken recently that has brought some sweetness into your life? Is there something new you'd consider learning or trying out?