Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Uprooted foundations, JOY... and it's my choice?? [Day 2]

In November 2005, I was part of a mission trip to Mississippi. It was 11 weeks after Hurricane Katrina had devastated the Gulf Coast.
Photographs and news reports did not adequately describe the scene. One of the most powerful images to me was a house that had been moved from its foundation and was sitting on railroad tracks. The house looked to be in good condition – obviously that appearance was deceiving.

I had coffee recently with a new friend. She told me – and I say this with great humility – that she had wanted to chat with me because every time she sees me, my spirit just screams JOY.

I smiled.
A Sunday School song came to mind… I’ve got the joy joy joy joy down in my heart

I hoped my spirit was still screaming JOY…

Because recently, I feel like the dislocated house.

How about you?

I don’t like it.
For a number of reasons, intrinsic and extrinsic, JOY was a choice I once had to be diligent about making. It didn’t come naturally to me. No, that’s a lie…it did come naturally but I subverted it with negativity and murmuring and self-pity.

With the help of great friends and great sermons and prayer and diligence, I climbed out of that hole. My emotions found balance. JOY was a natural state of being.

But not today. Not for quite a number of days.
How about you? Does it ever hit you that you can’t remember the last time you laughed? Yeah, me too.

If there was a hurricane, I missed it…or maybe it was a series of small storms.
Something changed the landscape and moved me off my foundation.
Unlike the Gulf Coast residents, I had a choice.

I choose worry and fear and angst. I chose.

How about you?

Oh sure, there were factors – intrinsic and extrinsic.
Everything in life hasn’t been fabulous.
But I still got to choose.

A wise person has been telling me each of us gets a limited number of days, and JOY should always be the choice.
I refused to listen, refused to heed that good advice, refused to join in the JOY.

How about you? Yeah, you have done that as well.
Maybe, like me, you are smacked in the heart with the knowledge that choices have consequences.
Wasted days, lost time, lost opportunity, hurt hearts.

This day is almost gone.
Tomorrow we get to start fresh. New mercies. Praise God for that.

Maybe you will join me in examining your heart and making good choices.
I want my spirit to scream JOY.

How about you?

We will talk again tomorrow…


I’m participating with The Nester in 31 Days of Examining My Heart. 
This is Day 2.
You can find all 31 Dayers here. There are so many wonderful topics.
If you miss any days in the series, you can find the introduction and each day's post here.

Beth Painter is a writer and motivational speaker. You can follow her on Facebook on the “Think Big focus small” page.
Beth is available to speak to your group about how to make your dreams and desires come to life!

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