I know what it’s like to wake up and feel exhausted.
I know what it’s like to glance over at the little boy socks on the floor, laying there again, two inches away from the hamper, and think … why?
Even the smallest of frustrations can so easily snuff the joy right out of me these days. Joy so often hangs there in the balance, so fragile, vulnerable to the slightest shift of wind. It’s hard to juggle life and the raising of three kids — period. But then add to that the complication of a chronic illness … sometimes it’s all a mission of sheer survival.
But today, as I woke early enough to find myself in the actual quiet before the sun fully rises, I thought … I am so tired of merely surviving. Where has my joy gone?
Joy, it’s always a function of gratitude — and gratitude is always a function of perspective. If we are going to change our lives, what we’re going to have to change is the way we SEE. ~ Ann Voskamp
These are beautiful words indeed, words that I could imagine hanging up on my wall somewhere, framed in white washed weathered wood … but words to actually frame my heart, contain the messiness of life? I’m not so sure. Sometimes life from any angle is hard, no matter what.
However, I know God never promised a life without troubles. He never promised a life without frustration or thwarts or loss. And this is something that pangs me, sickens me, and leaves me dizzy with frustration … not just for me, but for others whom I see the joy snuffed right out of them too … understandably so at times.
But God has promised joy. I have to remind myself of this daily. He has promised a strong joy in Him.
“Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” ~ Nehemiah 8:10
My life aches for joy … it always has. But especially now, as the new fall season tiptoes in, lugging the same old struggles. As I wake exhausted, to the sight of dishes piled in the sink, three kids arguing again, and rivers of sticky maple syrup on the kitchen counters … yes, my life aches for clean-wiping joy that runs deep.
I know they say when we can’t change our circumstances, the best thing we can do is change the way we see them. To this I say, easier said than done! But it’s true, it’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.
Every day I look at a ton of spills on the floor and in my life … without fail.
But I pray that I will look less and see more — see more of the threads of joy there in the chaos, and the glimmers of strength there in the fog.
Because we are meant to know sweet joy, to be filled, to overcome.
So I wait, praying for gratitude to fill and frame my heart … and for the eyes to SEE.
Does your life ache for joy too?