The year of joy


I read quite a few blogs and many writers take on a theme for the year to focus on for personal growth. Even though I am not an “official” blogger I like the idea of being faithful to growing in one area. One of the things that is challenging for me is to focus on the positive. In general I consider myself a positive person, but at times that is just the front I put on. Inside I struggle to think positively and meditate on the goodness around me.

For that reason I hope to let this be the year of joy. My goal is once a week to write a “moment of joy” from the previous week. The Bible says we are to be joyful in all circumstances- with our eyes fixed on Christ. Real joy is not just happiness, rather a comfort and peace that the Lord is King of all.

Clap your hands, all you nations; shout to God with cries of joy. For the Lord Most High is awesome, the great King over all the earth. He subdued nations under us, peoples under our feet.Psalm 47:1-3

To start off this adventure, one story comes to mind. It was both joy and pain in the same moment.

Last week, Ed and I took advantage of really cheap tickets and went on a cruise for Christmas. We had a wonderful time relaxing and seeing many new sites in the Caribbean. At the end of the cruise there was a special presentation of flags from all the countries represented by the staff on board. Each country was named one by one and a representative waved the flag for all the passengers. There was music and celebration of the wonderful togetherness of the world on the ship.

I was taken aback by the pride and joy shown in each country represented. How amazing to be surrounded by so many people from literally every tribe, tongue and nation. I was enthralled with this celebration and the little taste of heaven represented.

Then I realized- not everyone on that ship will experience this type of celebration in heaven. The world is full of people who do not claim the Lord as their King. Although the moment of “all nations” was before me, it was for earthly reasons. I was saddened by the fact that it is so easy to settle with this as “the best” and forget the best that is to come.

My joy was mixed. I saw people from every tribe, tongue and nation together- but it was not to praise God. I look forward to the day it will be at the feet of Jesus- but know there is much to be done before that can happen.

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