Wednesday, November 14, 2018

When Your Joy Is Stolen

By: Jenifer Metzger

My One Word for 2018 is joy. I had been praying for my son to have true joy and felt God telling me that I needed to find it too. I was excited to begin to focus on where real joy comes from: the Lord. Happiness is circumstantial but joy comes from knowing the Lord and having salvation.

January 1st, I begin to look up Scriptures that talk about joy with the intention of memorizing them. I was determined to keep my joy no matter what circumstance came my way. Not even a month into the new year and my study of my One Word, we received a call that my mother-in-law unexpectedly passed away. Losing my mother-in-law and the pain it brought was a punch in the gut that tried so hard to steal my joy.

Fast-forward to this summer when news spread of the sudden passing of Wynter Pitts. While I didn't know Wynter personally, I had worked on her book launch teams and followed her ministry and family for quite awhile. I ached for her family. Wynter was my exact age and knowing she passed away from a massive heart attack scared me and threatened to steal my joy.

Just weeks after Wynter's passing, a local church van crashed killing three teens and injuring many more. We know the pastors and some of the families and seeing their pain was heartbreaking. My joy was once again threatened.

Two weeks ago today my grandfather was rushed to the hospital with a massive headache and high blood pressure. We found out he would need open heart triple, possible quadruple, bypass surgery. The family was terrified. I remember kissing his cheek before surgery praying it wouldn't be the last time I ever saw him. My joy was threatened. My grandfather came through surgery and was doing well. His heart strong and blood pressure normal. But while in the hospital his leg stopped working, making him unstable on his feet. Going straight from the hospital to a nursing home for rehab crushed me and threatened my joy.

Yesterday a dear friend called to say her husband was in a car accident and life-flighted to a hospital in another state. Both hips broken, leg broken, ribs broken, mangled foot, possible amputation to come. Knowing all this family has already been through and the long road that lies ahead, my joy was threatened.

Each time a crisis arose and I felt my joy being threatened, felt the enemy coming in to steal it, I turned to God. I said words that hurt to say in the moment, but were more true than ever: God, please work a miracle, but even if, I will still praise You and keep my joy.

Do not grieve, because the joy of the Lord is your strength.
Nehemiah 8:10

Things will happen in life that feel like they are going to crush us. We will grieve. We will face trials. But we can keep our joy through it all because we have a hope and a future with God. Even if He chooses not to move the mountain we are facing, He is still good and we can trust He is doing what is best. We can have faith that through it all, He will never leave us and He will never forsake us. This is how we keep our joy. This is how we can praise Him in all circumstances.

Friends, whatever you are facing today, whatever is threatening to steal your joy, turn the Lord for your strength. Let Him be your joy.

It is time for the Woman to Woman Word Filled Wednesday Link Up. We desire to connect women of God with one another and encourage each other in Christ. So grab a cup of coffee or glass of sweet tea, sit back and visit a few blogs. Be encouraged and share your own stories in their comments.

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  1. I am so sorry you have had so much in such a short time. It is so hard especially when these major events become a pile. Our joy is under threat all the time, but God's joy is our strength. Leaning on Him and remembering just Who we lean on whether it is a hard time or just a lovely day, He is our all.
    Do I remember that? No!! But He reminds me and I fall into His strong arms. Thank you for a great reminder. I am leaning all the time as I lost my precious husband to cancer in June. But I look to this verse daily...
    "For your Maker is your husband,
    the LORD of hosts is his name;
    and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer,
    the God of the whole earth he is called." Isaiah 54:5
    Caring through Christ, ~ linda @ Being Woven

  2. Wow - that's a lot to happen in a short time. Love the way you summed it up at the end.

  3. Jenifer, I am so sorry there has been so many heartaches this year. Praying for your grandfather to have restored health; for your friend who needs God to bring strength and healing. May you, and they, be encouraged to look to the God who is able to undertake in each of these situations.


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