5 Keys to Unlock Joy This Week
So, we’re stuck in Vegas. Yup. You read that right. Steve and I are driving back to Colorado from California. Yesterday, the air conditioning went out in our car. We were inconvenienced but thought, “Well, maybe we’re just supposed to drive through the desert with our windows down.” But, at the insistence of our son, we stopped at a mechanic in Vegas to have the car checked out. A half an hour later the mechanic said, “Get a hotel, you’re not going anywhere.” Apparently, the radiator had a hole and if we had driven it further we would have been stuck in the desert. I’ve got to be honest. Neither of us was particularly happy with this news. So here we are in Vegas until our car is drivable.
All of this has me thinking about joy. What are the keys to authentic joy in the middle of inconvenient and unexpected circumstances?
Psalm 105: 1-5 says, “Give praise to the Lord, proclaim His name; make known among the nations what He has done. Sing to Him, sing praise to Him; tell of all His wonderful acts. Glory in His holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice. Look to the Lord and His strength: seek His face always. Remember the wonders He has done, His miracles.” Tucked in these verses I see 5 keys to joy even when life doesn’t quite go the way you planned.
- Declare His name. When you don’t know what to do, remember God is for you. Rather than going in the tank emotionally, declare His name over your circumstances. Yesterday, as we were debating about what to do, I was praying, Lord your name is wisdom and you promise to give wisdom to those who ask. Please Lord show us if we should keep driving. Clearly, God answered!
- Look For the Story. The Psalmist writes that we are to, “Make known what He has done”. We can’t have any great stories of what God’s done unless we experience a little inconvenience. Right? Life’s most inconvenient moments make wonderful stories of God’s faithfulness and provision. So, when life falls apart, look for God’s provision. Watch and see how He will provide, financially, physically, emotionally and spiritually. Be alert to the story He is unfolding.
- Sing to Him. Singing and praising God lifts your spirits and turns your eyes to the greatness of God. Early this morning, I got our praise music going and immediately, I felt the presence of God in our hotel room. Praise changes the atmosphere and your attitude.
- Find your Strength in Him. There are moments when life pushes you to your limit. God however is unlimited. He can provide the strength that you are lacking. He promises that in our weariness, He provides strength. When you face difficulties this week, turn to Him for strength and praise Him in advance for the strength He will provide.
- Remember what God has done in the past. Yesterday, when we realized we were stick and were going to have to pay a lot of money to have our car fixed, my mind remembered another time years ago when we had an emergency on a freeway and God provided. Remembering what He’s done in the past fuels your faith for today.
This week, you might face some unexpected or inconvenient circumstances. Try a few of these keys and see if you don’t unlock joy. Life’s an adventure. Life’s most inconvenient moments make wonderful stories of God’s faithfulness and provision. I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment and tell me when has an inconvenience been turned into joy for you?
Praise God, Becky! Yes, He has been Faithful. There are so many times – but the most recent sweetness has been when out of the blue, my daughter (who experienced a frienship trauma in school) was blessed with a scholarship to spend 6 weeks at an awesome camp where she has made friends with children her age from around the world. Praising Him. Sadly, however, I am still wondering what joy looks and feels like, especially joy in the LORD. Your book “30 day praise challenge for parents” helped immensely, but there sure was a big battle which I think I let the enemy win because I gave up. Thank you for sharing your experience, Becky.
Thanks for sharing. It seems to be about living in the moment and slowing down time. I read your book every morning and am now on the third reading. I enjoy so much”God speaking” to us. It is something I always need to hear. Blessings.
Becky, inconveniently I had a heart attack in early summer. It was mild but I sure did not have time for this! I had summer plans. Family plans and ministry plans. We had planned to have the families of my Bible study women out to our lakehouse for the 4th of July. Our plans went forward and my joy soared as the women in my Bible study took over and planned all the food. I was able to continue to pace myself yet go on with ministry plans! I also planned to attend Speak Up. At first I thought my heart attack would prevent me from attending. My husband encouraged me to pray and take it a day at a time. So, as the time for Speak Up drew near my endurance increased and God provided a dear sister to drive with me. Our time enroute was revitalizing! She was just diagnosed with breast cancer and I was recovering from a heart attack, but with arms linked and God’s strength we by faith drove to Speak Up. Trusting God this summer has brought unspeakable joy÷
So sorry, Darlene! Hope you’re feeling better!
Darlene, I didn’t read your entire post till just now! When I met you this summer I had no idea you had just had a heart attack! I am so thankful that God healed you and that I was able to meet you! Grateful for what God is doing in your life!!! Hugs to you, Darlene!!!!
Lynne D Ross
PROPS TO JOSIAH, A WISE SON!!!!
Seriously!!! Love you, Lynne!