I've got the Joy, Joy, Joy, Joy

When I don’t post, I get kind of nervous. It’s the old, I-hope-the-internet-doesn’t-forget-about-me lie. Yesterday I really wanted to sit down and write, but I just couldn’t. My brain, my heart and my spirit were…heavy. It was one of those days where even thought I vacuumed the house, had dinner ready to go in the oven before lunch and even did a load of clothes, I felt blah. Being a mother and a wife was just weighing heavily on me.

So, while the kids were upstairs playing I opened up my Bible Study plan (I’m randomly doing a 14 day study called Hearing From God Each Morning on the YouVersion app) and began to read Psalm 63:1-3

scripture art

 

And I felt like *I* was the one that had written it. In a dry and weary land? My soul thirsts for you? That’s where I was. Dry. Weary.

Yet, I have seen the power and glory of the Lord. I know He has good—even great things for me. Why can’t I suck it up enough to stop moping around in the desert?

I read the verses probably 10 times, pulled out my computer and listened to the Seeds version of the verse on repeat. Then I wrote it out by hand word for word. And I cried.

Cried because I know God’s love is better than life. That my first-world-rich-people-problems should barely be a blip on my radar. And I realized the ball was in my court–it was my time to lift up my hands. My time to praise Him as long as I live.


That afternoon, I read Dave Stone’s new book, Building Family Ties with Faith, Love and Laughter. The title alone should have clued me in–laughter is something I’ve been needing the last couple of days. He talks about how Christians should be the most joyful people on the planet and how our, “day-to-day attitudes with our families grow out of an internal relationship with Jesus, not the external circumstances of life. And so no matter what happens to us abundant life is what happens in us–unbridled joy.”

This isn’t something we should be surprised by. Jesus promised this to us, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” John 10:10.

After literally sobbing through the first two chapters of the book, I realized God was speaking to me. I need some joy. Or rather, I have it. And I need to start living in it. I need to throw my hands in the air because His love is better than life. I need to live in and act on the fullness of life that Jesus has given me.

Well, God didn’t stop there. This morning in my YouVersion devotion, I read Ephesians 3:16-17 which talks about the Holy Spirit being in our inner being and Jesus dwelling in our heart. The question was, “Is your life a comfortable place to live?”.

Just as if you walked into a house for a party and the hostess started screaming at her husband while the guests got more and more uncomfortable, does Jesus reside in your life only to be bombarded with grumbling, fear, anger and jealousy? Or do you wake up and choose to have praise and thanksgiving on your lips and in your heart?

Whew. That’s a rough one. Do I wallow in how I feel? how my kids behave? how my husband wittingly or unwittingly slights me? how my house looks? how my schedule weighs? Or do I choose to navigate those “problems” with joy? with assurance that God’s love is better than life?

You think it would have ended there. But it didn’t. Every morning I read a chapter from Power of a Praying Parent (and share it on our Facebook page, too!) and what do you think today’s prayer was? Inviting the Joy of the Lord. I took a picture of my favorite part and posted it…

joy of the lord

But really, it was a prayer for me: Don’t allow YOURSELF to be stuck with a sad, depressed, angry, moody or difficult personality. PRAY YOURSELF OUT OF IT.

And those, my friends, are my marching orders. I’m pulling joy out of me. I’m resting in the joy Jesus has already given me. And I’m putting on the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness and lifting my voice to God.

Even when I feel sad, depressed, angry, moody and difficult. I want to be a joyful woman, a joyful mom and a joyful wife.

Are you ready to do JOY with me?

bible craft

ps–you can download that Psalm 63 art here! I *think* it should fit in a frame, if not, you can print it out and put it in a notebook or tape it on your kitchen cabinets! :)

linked to Far Above Rubies & The Better Mom

Comments

  1. I love you and your heart. I also love this verse and its a favorite song of ours from Seeds as well. xoxo

  2. Thank you, friend. I needed permission today to “not be okay.” But then…the extra push to not leave myself there.

    Your heart and your love for our Jesus gives me such joy.

    And now…I’m pulling out the guitar…if something comes of it – you’re SO getting a credit line! :) Love you.

  3. Beautiful. Just beautiful.

  4. Great stuff. It’s SO HARD for me to push past my FEELINGS sometimes! I should check out Stone’s book. :) I also am reading one on my Kindle, The Joy of Living for Jesus by Katie Hoffman and it’s SO good! :)

  5. Wow, I really felt what you shared! And I sooo appreciate your honesty and transparency! Every time you blog something “real” from the heart, I am convicted and turned back around to Christ! I can’t tell you how many times I have felt or acted the way that you describe, but justify it rather than get focused or convicted of my sinfulness. Thank you for ministering to me even in times of heavy heart! Keep sharing! Also, not to throw a biggie just out there, but please pray for me and my marriage. We are going through a very rough time and im very discouraged right now. I appreciate you reminding me of the words to the seeds song. I had to pull out the whole cd to listen to them all! I cried and praised all the way through! Thank you for your ministry!
    H

  6. Amanda, I SO appreciate your heart and your honesty. I love coming here to read of what God is doing in your life and to find someone so passionate about teaching Christ to our children. Many blessings, Jessica

  7. I LOVE that Seeds song and that verse! I teared up reading this because I SO needed it! And you’ve inspired me to pick up my Power of a Praying Parent book as well! Thank you friend! Love you!

  8. Well, your nervousness was surely for naught! Not that you had to make up for “lost posts” but you sure made this one count! I have 3 new resources I”m dying to dive into because of your honesty here and in sharing how you lifted your spirits. I think I need to save this post for future reads and re-reads! Thank you!

  9. I understand! I love Seeds worship and when I’m glum I like to turn the music on and dance around with my children even when I’m crying letting His Word wash over me reminding me of the inheritance we have! May we continue to believe! Praying for you, you are encouraging so many mamas (me included)

  10. Oh girl, this is the divine kick in the pants I needed. Love you for your words *and* your heart! Thank you, friend.

  11. Hi Amanda,
    I help teach a class at our church for new, first time moms. I hope you don’t mind that I am sending a link to this article to them. It touched my heart and am praying it touches them in the new season of motherhood that they are in. Thanks for sharing your heart and for a great word from God!!!!

  12. You’ve got me happily humming to myself as I bop around doing my morning to-do’s: I’ve got joy, joy, joy in my heart.

    Thanks for the uplift this morning. I just love the idea of praying myself out of a less than joyful mindset and into a joyful, abundant overflowing heart!

  13. i’m thinking God’s got a message He wants us all to hear in this regard. Cuz yeah, totally hear ya sister. In fact wrote out a post and have it scheduled for next monday on exactly that…looking for joy and discovering the root of why it’s missing. thankful to have online friends like you…open to the Spirit, so we can make thunder sista!!

  14. Thank you for that post. My son has been very angry and Im not sure why. I’ve been trying to figure it out but your right I just need to pray. Thank you, Susan

  15. My reading list continues to grow with books you recommend!

    Great reminder here. And now I have that song stuck in my head!

    Mary Beth

  16. Thank you Amanda for your beautiful and honest post, Jesus Bess you! I am inspired by your courage and faith. I will look up those books you mentioned. xJess

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