Today is the last day of 2016.
I think over the past year with bittersweet reflection. As a stay-at home-mom, I consider all of the beautiful moments with my awesome kids and how I must be doing something right with them, because they are so great. I love them with all my heart, and I love spending time with them, but something seems to be missing, and I can’t help but feel very sad. Everything within me has been trying to stir up some joy in my heart, but nothing seems to really be doing the trick. I guess there is no trick to acquiring true joy.
What is the source of joy anyways?
Is it a product of personal perspective and feeling content where you are? Maybe it is a feeling of success and progress. Joy is supposed to be a fruit of the Spirit right? It is supposed to be a by-product of a good relationship with our Heavenly Father. Overall, I feel that I have that, but still, where is my joy?
My first thought is that I must be doing something wrong.
I must not be reading my Bible enough or seeking God out enough and trying to listen for His voice. Herein lies the issue. Joy is not something we earn. Striving and striving will never earn me some joy. Just like they say that money will never buy happiness, works can never buy me joy.
What can be done about it then? I cannot force myself to just “be content,” and I certainly cannot force my heart to be glad. I feel the word “depressed” trying to attach itself to me. God, please no! I do not want to choose a dark path that dark thoughts will surely take me down. Like movies where the trees have arms and grab unsuspecting travelers who have chosen the wrong path and those travelers find themselves lost and in a major predicament to find their way back home.
The only true home and place for me to rest is in my Heavenly Father’s arms.
During this Christmas season, I focused on the meaning of Immanuel. Immanuel translates to God with us. The reason the King of the Universe came to Earth, became a man, and died on the cross, was to spend eternity LOVING US! I know this is the truth of the matter, but still I feel like God is far from me. Why?
Maybe He knows how angry I have become. I have become so frustrated over all of the things in my life that I am unable to change and He has not. I feel let down by Him. I have lost hope so many times waiting for someone or something to come and rescue me. I don’t know how I wanted them to do that necessarily, but I’ve just given up hope on many of them. I feel myself being tempted to do the same with Him. I don’t know how to fill up on Faith or Joy or Love….Definitely not Peace. Only He can fill me with those things. Romans 15:13 says “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
AS YOU TRUST. Hmmm… that’s always been a weak spot for me. I think my first goal for the new year will be to memorize this one:
What should I look forward to for 2017?
My 2016 prayers for physical healing as well as emotional well-being have so far gone un-answered. Still I am left in my struggle. I feel claustrophobic when I think of all of the mountains that surround me. I’m sick of trying to climb any of them.
Maybe it’s time for me to quite struggling and let Him carry me up.
God, for 2017, I pray that You remove fear from my heart. I pray that you bring me Joy when I have none. Help me to hear Your voice. Keep my eyes on You, and give me Your perspective. Even when the waves try to crash over my head, I pray Your eyes and arms reaching out for me, will lead me ahead. Keep me from being swallowed up by sadness. Help me to stand on truth. As my daughter is singing from a commercial, “Put a little love in my heart…”
I pray for a truly “Happy” New Year for myself as well as anyone reading this.
“God bless you and utterly satisfy your heart…with Himself” – Amy Carmichael
Love & Blessings
Stephaney - Me Flying Free
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