Sing unto the Lord, O ye saints of his, and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness. For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.
A life of eternal joy trumps a season of sadness, every time!
After attending a funeral yesterday, of my dear aunt, I was temporarily saddened when a notice popped up in my inbox this morning, “Rita Martin turns 86 on Januray 13.” The message took me by surprise and it took another minute for me to smile again, realizing she is no longer aging and is residing in eternal joy.
While roses are beautiful, their thorns will periodically prick us and draw blood. I praise You, Father, thanking You immensely for the roses…while I am ever grateful for the thorns.
“Experiencing” hurt and “facing” hurt are both personally painful, yet “facing” hurt can be much more agonizing.
“Experiencing” hurt causes personal, physical or emotional pain, followed by healing, sometimes a scar and possibly memories which cause us to “face” or unlock the hurt at our discretion. There are so many hurts and areas of sadness which surface as a result of death, divorce, addiction, abuse, lies, cheating, molestation, rape, bigotry, theft, gossip, etc. The list of causes is long, indeed.
“Facing” hurt means looking directly into the pain, delving in it, as well as the underlying cause and long-term effect. It means studying the tributaries of the pain and digging way beneath the surface hurt in order to analyze its origin...all the while placing ourself in the individual shoes of those concerned as well as questioning all the possible repercussions in the future.
I speak from personal experience when I say that facing hurts is not easy, especially those which we may have inflicted upon others. True enough, we are all inherently sinful and have all fallen short; however, many times these Biblical facts do not weigh heavily enough in our heart and mind to compensate for Satan’s thorns or skillful ways to use guilt against us. Satan has a way of blindsiding us even after we have asked for forgiveness and have been forgiven. Just when we think we are ok, back on track and standing boldly for Christ, a thorn pricks us! Out of the blue, here comes a remark or something you read concerning an aspect of the hurt…and wow, it can take the wind right out of our sails. You regress and face the hurt once again. Satan would love to keep us there where he attempts to infiltrate our stance and cause us uncertainty and doubt. His playing field is built on insecurity and he would love nothing more than to keep us subdued. How do we handle it?
"Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved." -Psalm 55:22
How does it end? When does this “Joy” that “comes in the morning” totally and permanently replace yesterday’s sadness? Well, it only happens when we let it. How do we “let” it? The ONLY way to replace sadness with joy is to CHOOSE JOY! Merely saying, “I choose joy” will not cause permanent JOY. We must truly put joy into practice and focus on living out our joy in Christ Jesus. The first thing we must do is focus more on Christ than we do ourselves. We must replace our sadness with His joy. The only reason to regress and think on the lesson God has taught you during your time of pain and sadness is when you utilize it for His good in helping others or drawing others to Him.
“Hold on, my child, JOY comes in the morning!”
Has Jesus not endured all possible facets of the hurts we face? Has He not chosen the right path and pointed us in the right direction? Has He not forgiven our sin and saved us from ourselves? Did He not die so that we might have eternal life with Him? Does not the JOY in Him and everlasting life surpass all momentary earthly circumstances of sadness or hurt in which Satan often tampers? Are we not more than conquerors? Do we believe what we say we believe? Then, by all means, let’s live it…boldly and corageously!
"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose." -Romans 8:28
Father, God, I love You and I praise You with all that is within me. I thank You for Jesus and what He means to me. I thank You, Father, for Your omnipotent power to work all things together for my good. I pray for everyone within a season of sadness, that we may always look toward you for guidance, and hope in our tomorrows. May we choose JOY in Christ and boldly align our lives with Him on a regular basis. May we consistently walk courageously with You while wearing Your armor which You have provided for us. Father, God…thank You for Your many roses, for the thorns and especially for the eternal JOY You provide when those thorns prick us. Father, we not only choose JOY today, we proclaim it in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Captured in His reflection,