The JOY Challenge


On This Good Friday I am challenged to remember to give thanks in all things. To go one step further and find the joy hidden in the less than ideal circumstances I daily face.

And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.”                               ~ Luke 22:19 NIV

Ann Voskamp writes that the word thanks in this passage is eucharisteo. “Eucharisteo, thanksgiving, envelopes the Greek word for grace, charis. But it also holds its derivative, the Greek word, chara, meaning “joy”…Is the height of my chara joy dependent on the depths of my eucharisteo thanks?…So then…As long as thanks is possible, then joy is always possible.” (Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts, A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are p.32-33)

Can joy really always be possible? I want to believe it is so. Correction, I need to believe it is so. I look out across the chaos of my daily existence and I must choose gratitude but I am challenged to mine a little deeper and come up with JOY!

My need for perfection and approval have all too often 

robbed me of the Joy this life gives!

I recently wrote an article entitled Following Jesus in Imperfection which recounts my daily struggle for perfection in an imperfect world.

I then followed this up by writing another article Embracing Interruptions in which I discussed the need to change my perspective in order to find purpose and joy.

So this, then, is my third attempt at gleaning Joy from this daily gift we call LIFE! I share with you Joy #1 and I ask you to keep me accountable to share the Joy(s) that will follow as life daily gives me gifts I did not plan to receive.

JOY #1: My son and I sat in a doctor’s office and waited over an hour in the patient room to be seen by the doctor. This day I had planned to go to a meeting with my husband out of town. Instead I wait, the precious moments of my life draining away at the mercy of someone else’s schedule. My son is sick but he is silly and so he is threatening to send text messages on my phone to his father. Messages for example like “HI Sexy” I take the cell phone away! Then he sees the camera above the computer station in the patient room and proceeds to dance. We laugh until we cry. This boy who is the true gift, not my time, not my calendar, not my list, has redeemed this moment for me! JOY

Nothing is worth more than this day. ~ Goethe

What JOY can you glean from this imperfect, interrupted day?

…looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. ~ Hebrews 12:2 NKJV

Follow JOY(s) #2-Eternity on Facebook

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