Joy revived

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I love this.

It’s from Heaton Park in Manchester.

I derive such pleasure from the beauties of nature as well as the man-made.

The out doors has always had a pull on my heart and I cherish the opportunities to sit and take it in.

Recently the Lord has been working in my heart in ways I’ve never experienced.

It had to do with my joy, or lack thereof.

I’d been blind to it, but for some time those who love me the most have noticed it and commented accordingly.

With my attention fixed upon each circumstance, each task, each change, each need, I had slowly grown hard and businesslike, for my day-to-day was filled to overflowing with “must be done“.

I was unaware.

Frankly, I was even unable to hear the concerns.

I listened to their words and would pray about it.

I’d even feel like I had a change.

Yet, I had to admit an ever increasing weariness of soul.

It was only recently with the Lord that I was able to see the weariness is the thing my loved ones are speaking of.

In the midst of life, I’d lost hold of deep resounding joy.

I had faith.

I had patience.

I had love.

But joy had gotten lost.

What brought it back?

What renewed my joy of living?

-disappointment-

I had discovered all my plans for the next two weeks were undone.

I had been looking forward to a break, to some vacation time, a chance to reward my kids with something out of the ordinary.

I was so disappointed.

I went to the Lord.

Let go.

Of everything?! All my plans? How many things must I give up? What about…”

The list was long of reasons I shouldn’t have to let go.

Then the Lord went deeper.

Why does it matter? When did I tell you to make these plans?

-hmmm-

It wasn’t easy or fun, but I was able to see my plans and many of my ideals were futile, simply me trying to get life to look the way I thought it should.

“Lord, I’m sorry. I willingly give You every plan, desire, expectation, task, and opinion. Please help me to die to my own ideals and even to my own preferences so nothing will keep me from Your plans.”

I knew I never want to do anything just because I think it is best.

God alone knows what is best.

It’s been days.

I’ve been studying the Bible, relearning the verses about dieing to the old man so I can live new in Christ.

This morning, as I woke to the realization that my husband will be flying out tomorrow, that it’s still 2 weeks before our Bell is home, I have a large list of things which need to be accomplished…

I  smiled.

“It’s all in Your hands Lord.”

Then I hugged my hubby and realized,

my joy had been revived.

Deep joy which can not be put on or mimicked.

“Praise You, Father for taking me out of the weariness. Thank You for showing me how good it is to let go of what I think. Thank You for Your patience with my stubborn heart which wants things my own way. Thank You for teaching me that nothing in this life is worth holding tightly to but You. Thank You for reviving my joy, especially since I didn’t even realize it was missing. I praise Your name Jesus and I thank You for Your kindness and faithfulness! What would You have me do first this morning?”

Let’s write a blog…

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