Choosing Joy

Like everyone else, I am not perfect; and I don’t want to pretend to be. Since nobody reads here I can treat this page just like it is–my place to put down my thoughts and feelings.
So I have bad days. Granted, my “bad days” in Christ are 100 times better than any of my “good days” before He was Lord of my life. But lately…I have been letting the irritations of life get to me, and have not been the joyful momma I want to be. To be blunt, I have been a nagging, angry tyrant; that “constant dripping” the book of Proverbs mentions.
I have let the “poor me’s” go way too far.
Yes, hubby is home. The novelty, the newness has worn off, and we return to, well…life. The adjustment period has lasted longer than I anticipated. In his absence I had to do everything, and be everything, here on the homefront. Then, all of a sudden, after the merry welcome and the excitement wore off, we were left with “what do we do now?” I-having to let go of my control, and he, having to once again lead us when we were without him for so long. I let my hair down too soon, believing that now I could be relieved of some of the responsibility, and almost dumped it into his lap. Before he was fully ready. He needed time…to learn to live in a home again; and mostly to get to know his children once again (and get to know the new one he hadn’t met until his return.) And my impatience was felt by all…
Now what?
Trust God. But also, I must make a willful decision to choose joy.

Proverbs 15:13 says: “A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance: but by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken.”
I was too often choosing a sorrowful heart, and therefore my spirit was broken. And so hopelessness, impatience, and anger prevailed.

I have been reading about persecuted Christians in the world. Their families are ripped apart; they are tortured, imprisoned, and even killed. So I hold my babies close, and thank God that they are healthy, and here with me. I read of Sabina Wurmbrand, wife of pastor Richard Wurmbrand who was tortured imprisoned for 14 years for preaching the gospel in communist Romania, and who herself was taken and imprisoned for 3 years for the same. I thank God for my husband’s clothes on the floor, and his shaving paraphernalia in the bathroom, because he is here and not away from me indefinitely.
We have been so blessed here in our country; indeed, we are spoiled, because so many times we don’t recognize these blessings. We want more, more, more. And if we already have more, then we must upgrade. Then, when we have reached that goal, we are still discontent.
I don’t want to live in this constant, underlying tension. It hangs in the air and everyone in the home breathes it in and dishes it back out. Soon everyone is disagreeable and unhappy. All because of “Poor Little Me”! I want to be so filled with God’s Love that it overflows onto my loved ones, so that we are all utterly drenched in HIM…so I will choose joy over my flesh.

Thank you, Lord, that you want the best for us because You love us with Your everlasting Love.


One Response

  1. Dear Jessica,

    I just wanted you to know that I can relate to you. My dear husband has been sort-of unemployed for the last 3 months. I know about the “poor me’s”! What has been helping me is a suggestion that my husband made to me to start writing a devotion before the family woke up. In the process, I began reading through some devotionals, etc. and becoming quite encouraged!

    Merlin Carothers, especially, was helpful–he emphasizes thanking and praising God for everything. He wrote “Prison to Praise”, “Power in Praise” and “More Power to You”–all of which I own and have to re-read from time to time. You can find exerpts on his web site and can also order his books there. (He is a former military man himself).

    Some others are Hannah Whital Smith who wrote, “The Christian’s Secret of a Happy Life” and “The God of all Comfort”–you can find both of these for free on the internet.

    Brother Lawrence wrote “Practicing the Presence of God” which is also very helpful. I am currently reading Fenelon on the Christian Classics website.

    God bless you and your family, He is the answer!


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