Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
No matter what our situation is, this verse can help us all. Its not easy to be joyful sometimes. We do want to give up and stop praying. But I can tell you that its so much better to have joy and be thankful than to have no hope.
Sometimes the things in life don’t turn out like we hoped they would. Sometimes we get sick. Sometimes someone we love gets sick, or worse. Marriages fail, relationships are strained, finances are too tight…the list can go on and on. Through our own journey we’ve met people who are struggling with infertility, cancer, depression, and the loss of a child. I have learned that we all have struggles. Our struggles are no different than what others are going through.
I have made a very conscious, deliberate choice to practice the verse above. I’ve learned that no matter what my current circumstance is, I can always have joy. Having joy does not depend on what is happening in my life right now. Joy is constant in your heart.
Never stop praying. In fact, when life gets the hardest, I pray the most. In my opinion, when there is nothing more that I can do on my own, all I can do is pray. God hears the brokenhearted. He comforts us in our time of need.
Being thankful in our hard circumstances is not easy. How can I be thankful that my husband lost his legs and fingers? How can I be thankful that my kids will have to deal with this reality in their lives? The answer to those questions is this: I am thankful for the good that has come from the circumstances. I’m thankful for God’s provision for our family. I’m thankful to have a husband that is alive and healthy instead of being a widow and single mom of three kids. I’m thankful for the lessons that my kids have learned at such an early age. My kids have learned to be loving and accepting of all people, including those that are different from themselves. I’m thankful for God’s will in our lives because He can use it to bring others to Himself through it.
So, you see, no matter what is happening in your life, no matter what the circumstance, it is possible to have joy. God wants us to have joy in our hearts, to not give up when times get tough, and to find something to be thankful for in the good times and bad ones, too.