[singlepic id=27 w=280 h=200 float=left]I write often about how God restored my joy and encouraged me as a single woman of God. Some testimonies I share and others I keep safe in my heart. Yet I pray always that my pain will birth deliverance in someone else’s life. So this is another testimony of God’s goodness.
God encouraged my soul one day with these words…“Do not surrender your joy”.
Years ago I went through a stage in my life where I was working to resolve a lot of hurt. I gave God praise then because I was not in the storm but on my way out. Still, after a severe storm has passed over, we are left to pick up the rubble the heavy winds have left behind. We clean up the debris and build over again. God reminded me that, “Weeping may endure for a night but joy cometh in the morning.” The time had come to rebuild my joy.
Thank God, storms do not last always.
God showed me, by the operation of the Holy Ghost, the power that I have. He has given me the ability and authority to choose how I am feeling and to choose my emotional response to a situation. For a long time I relinquished that power. I surrendered my joy. I held on to sorrow and nurtured it.
I freely gave up my joy and sadness grew in its place. It was like a stray cat. You feed it, care for it, and it makes your home its home. I held tight to sorrow because I thought I had to. After all, the blessing I was looking for seemed to never come.
But sometimes when you go through a situation long enough, you just get sick and tired. You have had enough and then get fed up. I was fed up with my bowed down head.
When we turn our fear into faith and focus on God instead of the problem, we start the process of taking our joy back. For me personally, I no longer find any comfort in unhappiness or regret. I simply will not settle for it. I will not surrender the gift of joy God has given me.
I am not saying that I do not grieve or that I have no emotions. But at some point my sorrow must turn to joy. Continuing steadfastly in sorrow is unhealthy. I am no expert when it comes to depression, its various levels, or the effects on the body and soul. However, I do know what was going on in my soul. By feeding into sorrow and allowing it to grow, I became a spiritually and physically unhealthy person.
I was unhealthy spiritually because I struggled with my faith. I had a hard time believing that God was going to help me. I struggled to hold on to the promises in His Word. In my sorrowful mind, God’s promises did not apply to me. That mindset is damaging.
But thank God for sufficient grace.
God’s grace gave me the strength to call on His name. In great distress when I did not know what to say, I spoke His name and He came to rescue me. Thank you Jesus. He imparted healing in my life that began at the root. From the depths of my heart I offered God praise, and from the depths of this same heart joy sprung up like fountains of water.
The love and grace of God goes underground and resurrects the joy that the trials of this life try to destroy.
So from that point on, I was determined to have joy… and determined to be happy. My mind is made up. There is no reasonable explanation not to have joy. God has always come through for me. Yes, weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning. The time frame between night and day is a short time.
My trouble may not change in the morning, but it does not dictate joy’s place in my life. In the morning I may still be sick. In the morning I may still be in debt. In the morning I will still have enemies. Our condition may not change, but we (by the power of God) can change. How is this so? Because… God never fails and does not cease to be good.
Have you lost your joy? Ask God for restoration. Still got your joy? Feed it with gratitude, faith, and the Word of God.