Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
~ 1 Thessalonians 5:16 - 18
I was just on the phone with the daughter of one of my patients and she shared with me, "You know, I just struggle to be joyful in all of these situations," and then laughed. She followed up by saying, "I would have been that person in the corner telling Paul to mind his own business."
Let's face it, we all have learned we can be happy or unhappy in all circumstances! I know that I am sure of this because if I were honest with myself, I have been!
I have encountered discouragement and joyfulness in situations of poverty as well as when I have experienced abundance, and in success, as well as, failure. The difference is never based on what the situation is, but always seems to come back to my own state of mind or how my heart "felt," about the situation.
When I realized that I was walking with God, I generally find that I encounter happiness and peacefulness. When I get wrapped up in my own problems, complaints and emotional needs, well, that is when I can't seem to discover the joy that could still be present.
I totally understand where the woman is coming from. We have all, "been there, done that."
In order for us to live a life filled with more joy, sometimes it means that we must come face to face with our own understanding of where we are arriving in both our heart and mind when the situation presents itself. Maybe it's when we recognize our own self in the situation that we can finally begin to allow joy to come in?
No matter what our situation, we can always count on God.
Stay in God's grip!
G. Todd Williams (c) 2020
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Rev. G. Todd Williams lives in the Houston metro area and is a Hospice Chaplain at Essential Hospice, Webster, Texas, and is an ordained Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) pastor.