FYI: Posts will be sparse around here until I replace my laptop.... Coming back to work after Christmas break apparently was too hard and it quit on me!

14 March 2011

Joy

Joy.  Something we all want/desire/long for in our lives. What is joy, anyways?
This is Merriam-Webster's definition:

Joy noun \ˈjȯi\
1: a : the emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune or by the prospect of possessing what one desires : delight
    b : the expression or exhibition of such emotion : gaiety
2: a state of happiness or felicity : bliss
3: a source or cause of delight

Well, okay. That's a fairly good definition.
However, I like to think of joy as this:

Joy: the sacrifice of praise


Why ever would you define joy as that, you ask? Well, let me explain...but bear with me as I go back to the beginning...

So a couple of weeks ago the toaster oven quit working.  Well, that is to say that the 'toast' button quit working.  It still works if you use the oven settings.
The ice maker in the freezer quit working also.  The freezer still works, it just doesn't make ice cubes anymore.
Then two nights ago the microwave broke.  As in it doesn't run the microwave part.  The light still works, the buttons all work, and the fan works.  (just let me tell you that the past couple meals have been very interesting, preparation wise, without the microwave =P)
not my image


Now some of my family members reacted to this by focusing on all the negative aspects. "The toaster oven's 'toast' button doesn't work, the freezer won't make ice, the microwave doesn't heat up food!"


Others responded by focusing on the positive. "We can still make toast by just using the oven settings.  Who needs ice in winter anyhow? Just go grab an icicle outside...or use the ice cube trays. We can still use the stove top. What did people do before microwaves were invented anyhow? Hey look! The fridge, dishwasher, oven, stove top, and freezer all work!" 




You see, some of us were looking at the situation as a half-empty glass of water. While the rest were looking at the same situation but saw that the glass was half-full.

Joy--true joy--is when we stop. and praise God no matter what is going on in our lives.

In Philippians 4:4, Paul commands that we "Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again -- rejoice!"
Yet how often do I slip into complaining instead of being grateful and rejoicing in what I have been given.  I know that I can't rejoice in every situation, I need God's help.  But oh, He is faithful and will help me in any and every situation I come across in life if I ask Him.

That is something I've really been challenged with lately and I thought I'd share. (and not just with the kitchen appliances either =P that was just the first illustration that came to mind)

I've found that going through my writing in and reading back through my 'blessings journal' (basically a journal where I write down all the things I'm thankful for--I got the idea from [here]) really helps me keep the mindset that my glass of life is half-full. =)

Another thing that encourages me is reading The Choice by Max Lucado.  You can read my post on it [here] to read it. =)

This song by Chris Tomlin is one that comes immediately to my mind when I think of joy:

Joy, unspeakable joy
An overflowing well,
no tongue can tell
Joy, unspeakable joy
Rises in my soul,
never lets me go


you can skip to 1:42 or 2:52 for this section

This definition was so much on my mind that I even made a Polyvore set to go with it. =P hehe!









Those are my thoughts on joy. What are your thoughts, dear friends? I'd love to know!


Love in Christ,

9 comments:

*Trini*

Oh, I LOVE that song...even though it's March...LOL. We danced to it last year in a Christmas cantata...

Shaynie

What an awesome post, Emily! We all need to remember things like that more often! I think if we looked around, there is always something to be joyful about!

Lauren Nicole

So beautiful!

Näna

That was a thoroughly uplifting post; thank you Emily.

Blessings,
Näna

Shannon

"Joy--true joy--is when we stop. and praise God no matter what is going on in our lives.".....I love that. :-)

I just wanted to let you know about a sponsor giveaway going on right now on my blog: a lovely 1 Corinthians 13:4 charm necklace from the She Drinks Coffee at Midnight Etsy shop. Hope to see you there! :-)

Blessings,
Shannon

belowtheplateau.blogspot.com

Näna

Hello Emily Grace!

In answer to your comment, it's very simple to add italics, bold and strike through to your post titles. All you do is add the following tags.

for italics: [i]text here[/i]

for bold: [b]text here[/b]

for strike through: [s] text here[/s]

Only the [ and ] are going to be replaced with < and >. This may not work with custom font...don't quote me on that...I've never tried it but I it's worth a try:)

Hope that helps you!

Xoxo,
Näna

Katie

Our microwave broke this week too...weird. Ha!

That is a very neat way of looking at joy! Great post!

Katie

Emily Grace

So glad that you were encouraged! =)

Näna - Thanks so much! and nope, sadly it doesn't work with custom fonts...*sigh*

Katie - ha! how are you guys getting along fixing meals? Today I had to start diner 45min sooner that I normally would(for leftovers!!) because we have to heat stuff up with the stovetop and oven...=P

Katie

Yeah, the other day I had to heat up leftover spaghetti in the oven. And I melted butter for this dessert I was making on the stovetop today. It's definitely interesting. Haha!

Katie

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