Welcome to the first ever edition of Weekly Encouragement, a series of blog posts meant to uplift, inspire and fuel the fire you've got burning inside of you (because it is in there; I can see it.)
This is for those individuals who are heeding the call to greater. To those leaders who rely on God to get them through their day to day. For the business owners who believe that there's more to life besides the ordinary.
This is for you.
Today, I wanted to discuss the main topic of what my new venture is all about. Today, we are talking about JOY. That sometimes quiet, silent, invisible feeling that creeps its way out of your heart and transforms your everything. Your face, your tone of voice, your choice in words, the way you dress. Joy is the ever-present force behind the satisfaction and truth of our daily lives.
A glad heart makes a cheerful face (Proverbs 15:13a ESV)
So where is your joy today?
Maybe this new year hasn't started off on the best note. The work and stress that you have at the end of 2017 carried its way over into 2018. Midnight on December 31 struck, and your bills are still there. Your pain is still there. The "what if"s aren't showing sign of going away any time soon.
It's hard to think that joy is available in any of that, right?
But let me redirect your emotions really quick with the truth.
No matter how you're feeling, no matter what's going on in your life or in the lives of those around you: your joy has never left.
Has that ever occurred to you? That in the middle of all of the mess and stress, that fire for true and abundant life has never gone out.
In what is now one of my new favorite verses, David has his main minister Asaph sing a song after seeing the Ark come into the city; one of his lines goes:
For great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;
He is to be feared above all gods.
For all the gods of the nations are idols,
but the Lord made the heavens.
Splendor and majesty are before him;
strength and joy are in his dwelling place.
(1 Chronicles 16:25-27)
Strength and joy are in His dwelling place.
Everything that you need to lift you up and carry you through is wherever He is.
So, I have a new question. Now, it's not "where's your joy?" but where are you?
Where are you, relying on God, leaning close to Him, or are you trying to hold things together all on your own?
Are you running to Him for His help and provision, or are you way too blinded by your needs and wants that you can't see His hand?
Today is the day.
Today, you make the choice to wake up.
Today, you choose the see the truth and not just the scary "shadow puppets" made by your circumstances to look bigger than what they actually are.
Today, you plant your feet back on solid ground and remember where your home is.
Where your joy comes from.
You will show me the way of life,
granting me the joy of your presence
and the pleasures of living with you forever.
Now, go do those things.