One of the staffers at TeenPact, Mark, talked about how we as Christians should be "joyful always". (1 Thess. 5:16) My friend put it best this way:"He [Mark] said that many people think that joy is an emotion, synonymous with happiness. But happiness, he said, is very different from joy. It's a fleeting feeling that depends on your circumstances to keep it going. Joy, however, is the hope that exists within us no matter what happens. Joy keeps us going because it is the faith that God is with us. Joy is our anchor no matter how stormy the seas get." ~Anna
That really hit home....a couple of days later.
Three years ago my family went through some hard times. One was our adoption, a death in the family and a mission trip. Here is something I wrote the other day..........
"In the end, we didnt get what we wanted but what God wanted instead. It was hard but sooo worth it. I can honestly say that I am upset b/c my sister is not "here" but I have to remember that we were on God's plan not ours. That same year, my uncle died and we had to remember we do not plan our lives, God does. Then my family went on a mission trip to Venezuela and our trip was delayed two days. Again, God showed us to rely on His plans and not ours."
After the "let down" of our adoption, the death and the mission trip, three years later I see the BIG picture, so to speak. I saw that we should be "joyful always" not just when things are going great but through the hard times.
This is something I learned during TeenPact and I pray that this will stick with me the rest of my life.
Thanks for reading!
oh, the ironic thing about our adoption is that her name was going to be..........JOY!