Every Friday, a group of writers gets together on the internet with Kate Motaung and we all write together for five minutes. No edits. No second guesses. Just writing. This is Five Minute Friday – and it is one of the most supportive groups on the web. Today’s writing prompt is: Surprise.
I’m going to actually set my timer this time and…
I used to think I was an optimistic, happy go lucky girl. I let myself feel all of my feelings and I felt them with all of myself. This meant that when I was happy, I was very happy. When I was sad, I was devastated. Ok, so maybe I was deceiving myself into thinking I was happy go lucky. Anyone with those kind of emotions is hardly a lah-dee-dah type personality.
As I have gotten older and had more life experiences – from joyful days to the most painful nights – I have felt the joy coming slower. It is easier to see what is wrong with the world than to let in the good. It is easier to say, everything is hard than to seek out those things that bring joy.
Which is why Philippians 4:8 is so important.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
I needed this verse so much, a few weeks ago I stuck it on my wall.
I’ve begun to ask myself some good questions again.
What was good in my life today? Yes, there was tension, screaming, tears, and tantrums from the littles at bedtime. What went well today?
What am I looking forward to this week? Seeing a friend? A block of time alone? An audition for a musical? (I’m going to try theatre again friends!! I bet you didn’t know that about me.)
What can I feel happy about right now? It may be simply the knowledge that no matter the struggle I am never alone. I do not need to force a feeling, just open myself up to the knowledge that The Lord is Near.
Seeking joy doesn’t come naturally to me, but it is a discipline I am engaging in and I am surprised by the joy I do find every day.
I just had to teach myself to see it.
I pray you find joy this week, my friends. For more thoughts on joy in the midst of the struggles of life, please read this post by my Redbud friend, Shelli Massie. She is wise. And she found joy in the cutest yellow couch.
If you would like your own printable of Philippians 4:8 to hang on your wall, feel free to download one here. It looks like this: