Ever find that you are in the same frustrating situation? Different day, same old problem. Total absence of Joy in an area of life?
Several years ago I realized mornings would bring me so much frustration. I loathed them. I was looking at my life, being in a new town and questioning how things were going and why they were going that way. The realization that I was experiencing no joy and simultaneously thinking God tells us in Scripture he sent Jesus to give us full and abundant lives. (John10:10) Meaning joy and love filled moments are available. So I questioned why am I not living or experiencing any of these good things in the mornings?
I began asking God why the mornings in our household were the opposite of joy filled. Telling God I didn’t like who I was in the mornings and how I knew that was having an effect on my whole family. The Scripture that says God’s compassions are new each morning and that joy comes in the morning. (Psalm 30:5 & Lamentations 3:22) These truths were circling around in my thoughts. I started asking God, “How can I have this fresh joy and His love and goodness flowing through my heart in the mornings?” I wanted to be a happy mom & wife, that was pleasant and encouraging.
So the search was on for the missing joy!
My whole childhood mornings were always hard for me. I just labeled myself “not a morning person” and went into my adult life still claiming that label. There was a huge problem with that, I have 4 kids. Little kids are morning people! Adding to that dynamic, the ages of my children during that time: a preschooler, and elementary child, and two teenagers, who attended 4 different schools!!!!
Mornings needed to be positive. For all of our sanity!
So the prayers began to flow, each morning I started taking notice of what was void of joy. I began praying for God’s help in each of those problem areas as I recognized them. The first problem area I asked for help: me. I asked God to change my attitude in the mornings, I asked for his supernatural energy. I asked God to fill me with joy so I could be joyful toward my children and help them get off to a better start to their day too.
This was about 5 years ago, God has transformed so much in me since then. I would not fully say I am a morning person, but God continues to guide me to ever increasing joy throughout the whole day. I have learned also to choose joy. This made such an impact on me being able to recognize when something wasn’t good, and knowing I serve a good God who can help with anything! So now when I notice places that seem lifeless, joyless and loveless I pause, reflect, and pray. Taking notice of frustration, angers, less than attitudes, and then start praying over them. We aren’t perfect, and there are real struggles, but God can do wonders in the midst of all circumstances if we seek Him for help.
The last few weeks I noticed any time I talked about the upcoming holidays, it would stir up anger and resentment in my spirit. After a couple of these conversations the light bulb began going off, or maybe a siren of flashing lights was more like it! I have a problem, that is in need of immediate prayer.
So the search for the lost joy is on! Again!
I began thinking through all the past holidays in my marriage, there has been 20 years of those. I also began thinking through my childhood as to find clues to where these unpleasant attitudes and feelings were coming from. Knowing God intends for each to have joy, I didn’t want to waste a day consumed by these feelings. I was also asking God what was going on with me, and asking for him to reveal my problem areas. Asking for healing and help. God promises such good for us and I want to live in that so I can love others as myself as He has commanded.
After spending quite a lot of time journaling and seeking God, He has revealed much through my prayer time just as he did 5 years ago for my morning problems. I am currently still praying through the emotions that surfaced and I am looking forward to God’s help and healing in this discovery. I am already beginning to feel His love helping me. I am thankful for this beautiful grace He gives us, no matter what kind of unreest we are walking through, be it one we made our self or ones that come from circumstances around us He is there ready to help. Ready not with just any help, but with victorious help!
Also, God does not place some of the labels on us that we have placed on ourselves-like “not a morning person” or “Can’t______” God does not place lifeless labels on us. Scripture we find over and over speaking all the good Jesus came to give us, and heal us from infirmities. Infirmities like bad attitudes, lackluster lives, despairing spirits and worrying.
I encourage you to take notice of any areas in your life that may lack some joy, or have reactions that are not pleasant, or feel worry over. Consider if there are any “labels” that you have believed or taken that don’t line up with who God says we are, that may be effecting things in your day. Write it out as a prayer to God, or spend time asking him as things may come to mind. He has so much good he desires to give us if we just ask! If your feel joy in all areas spend time thanking him for that wonderful gift!
The joy search is on, moving forward in the abundant goodness of the Lord!
Onward in joy living,