So, my story. I did not grow up going to church with my family. My only exposure to church was through going to church with friends. The most frequent being a friend I met in first grade. Every year she invited me to attend vacation bible school at her church. I eagerly attended for many reasons. She was a good friend, I am an only child so summer got boring and monotonous quickly, and I really enjoyed the time spent there. From there I became involved in Wednesday night youth activities when I got old enough for that. That too was fun. That didn’t really last for too long, because in high school our relationship changed – our friend groups changed. But, the seed was planted. I knew God, and I believed he was a strong force in my life. I was a miserable teenager – unhappy a lot. Whether warranted, that’s how I remember myself. I had hanging on my bedroom wall two crosses – which I think I found at garage sales – I would often sit in front of them and “pray”. I didn’t really know who I was praying to, but I knew it made me feel better. As I look back I know God was taking care of me even then.
Fast forward to college. I met a boy. The night we met we talked for hours, I went upstairs and told my roommate “I’m going to marry him” she thought I was crazy. He was a church going boy, and he asked me to go to church with him, and honestly I jumped at the chance J. That summer we attended his home church together. One afternoon we were out driving around and he asked me if I knew Jesus. I said “no”. I knew by now who Jesus was but nothing more. He shared Christ with me right there in his truck. The next Sunday I walked the aisle at that small town Baptist church and gave my heart and life to Jesus. I asked him to save me from my sins, and be the boss of my life. Best decision I ever made!! Two years later we were married in that church J. Ha! Told ya!
Jesus is a present figure in my life every day. I could share endless stories of how our life events could only make sense because of God’s hand. Many stories of monetary blessings that came at just the right time. But I have to say the biggest thing is the peace and joy that he brings me every day. Really as my blog title eludes, in the midst of my frazzled life I still have joy. That joy can only come from The Lord. See, there’s a difference between happiness and joy. Happiness is dependent on our circumstances. Joy only comes from The Lord. Our knowledge that He is in control and that no matter how bad things seem at the time, in the end He has the victory!! You see when Jesus died on the cross and rose from the dead He defeated the devil and the hold he has on God’s people. My trust in God and the big picture allows me to retain my joy each and every day.
An example – one day we came home from running some errands and there was water pouring down the driveway coming from the garage. We opened the garage to see water spraying everywhere, coming from the hot water heater. My hubby and I sat in the car and laughed out loud!!! We then unloaded the car and proceeded to clean up the mess. Joy!! Were we happy that we had to repair the hot water heater, or clean up a water mess? No, but in the grand scheme of things – joy!!
I really could go on and on. But not today. J Thanks for letting me tell my story, and if you made it this far – thanks for reading!!