About two years ago, my grandpa died. It was sudden and unexpected, one day he was healthy and what seemed like the next, he was dying in the hospital.
Life was suddenly different. A school schedule had already been almost non existent because my mom had just had a baby a couple weeks before, but now she was spending three nights a week at my grandma’s. When she was home, she was busy taking care of my baby sister, trying to get some school done with my younger siblings, and napping.
Things were really tough and to make it all worse, I was going through a really rough season of life. Life, family, and friendship issues were building up and I felt ready to explode.
There was no hope for joy. Until Yahweh showed me differently.
And today I’d love to share three of the ways God put joy in my life when things were tough.
Through the Good Days
When you’re going through a rough season, not every single day is going to absolutely suck. There are going to be days where life gives you a little break. Use these days to your advantage. I know that when life feels like crap, even the things that usually bring you joy seem dull. So when you have that brighter day, take some time to have you time, whether that’s reading a book or going out for coffee. Trust me, it’ll make the week a lot brighter.
He Gave Me a Hunger for His Word
While the days of rest from crap days was amazing and really helped, what brought so much more joy was the thirst for his word that God gave me.
During those days, I spent so much time reading the Bible which not only brought joy because I could see Yahweh through what I was going through but it brought joy because I grew in my relationship with him. It was during this time that I first started hearing his voice.
And maybe you don’t feel like reading the Bible because, well, you don’t feel like doing anything, but I’m sure you feel those urges that I did saying “You should pick up your Bible right now.” And it was when I listened that I just could not put it down and I found comfort in reading how I’m not alone in my struggles. That the men we call the closest to God’s heart went through times where they struggled and cried out to God in frustration. And reading verses that seemed like they had been put there just for me in this time.
In the End, the Pain is Worth It
When thing got bad initially, this wasn’t a though that even came close to my mind. Because, how could pain make life better in the end? But then God blessed me with a time of peace and I was shocked at how much I had grown through that season of trials.
Not only had I grown closer to God, but I had grown as a person.
So now, when things get rough, I’m able to look ahead with joy and know that when I get to the end of that season, I’m going to come out strengthened.
Finding joy in the trials is incredibly hard. Most of us might not want to find the joy because that means things aren’t as bad as we may be making them out to be. But then there’s that part of us that so desperately yearns for something good and happy and normal. That will show us life isn’t always going to be so hard. And with God’s help, that side can win.
“For I know the plans I have for you” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” 19:11
How do you find joy through trials?