I posted earlier about being afraid with my worsening eyesight. The eyesight issues are a long troublesome list, it’s getting harder to see fine print, the world is getting grayer by the day. And man, it’s hard not to have moments of worry regarding those facts. However, I refuse to allow that to ruin my life. I refuse to stop God’s joy from flowing.
The other night I went to a painting class with church friends. I’ll be honest, after I had shared about my eyesight issues, I almost felt guilty posting the picture of me having fun. What would people think if they saw me enjoying life? Would they think I over-exaggerated my eye problems? Shouldn’t I be sitting in a corner with a sad face? (Okay, I do that sometimes). I’ve been through some really rough stuff in my life and God is teaching me (and trying to teach) how to live in victory.
The battle over fear is a constant struggle for most of us who live in this crazy world. The early church went through horrific persecution and yet the letters from the apostles told them again and again to be joyful. Joyful? What’s up with that? How can someone have joy when run out of homes and business, fed to lions, burned at the stake, stoned, and a long list of terrible difficulties? Their request to the early church didn’t make sense, it doesn’t make sense, to tell someone to have joy through trials. And yet, Christianity is joy through trials — joy through the good, bad, and terribly ugly.
We can have joy regardless of what has happened, what is happening, and what may happen because of Jesus. With Jesus in our hearts, our hearts are always safe, and His joy flows forever. Joy isn’t something we have to manufacture, or muster up our strength and plaster on a fake smile, joy constantly and consistently flows from God’s throne.
Nehemiah tells us the joy of the Lord is our strength. God’s joy gives us strength. God’s joy is there for us, and with us, through everything. God’s joy brings comfort, healing, restoration, relationship, blessings, gifts, equipping, and eternal love.
The world expects us to act and react in certain ways. Yet, we aren’t of this world. We aren’t confined to this world and the world’s ways. We are forever free in Christ, living in His eternal love and His mighty power. Regardless of what is going on with us, or around us, we have hope in Christ and the joy of the Lord.
God works ALL things for the good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. So, I’m believing and trusting that ALL things are going to work for good with my eyesight. God will either heal me or walk me through another hardship, and either way I’m on the winning team. I refuse to let the devil steal or stop my joy!
Whatever trouble you may face, allow God’s joy to flow free!
“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!” for “we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” ~ Philippians 4:4 (NASB) , Romans 8:28 (NASB)