Confession: I am not a happy-all-the-time type of person. Dan is the optimist of the two of us. I can find rain clouds on the sunniest of days.
We balance each other out nicely.
Which is why I was kind of surprised that I could relate so much to this verse I heard the other day in Mass…
…although now for a little while you may have to suffer through various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith, more precious than gold that is perishable even though tested by fire, may prove to be for praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.
Although you have not seen him you love him; even though you do not see him now yet believe in him, you rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy, as you attain the goal of [your] faith, the salvation of your souls. (1 Pt. 1:6-9)
An indescribable joy.
That is what, despite our personality differences, we feel in the depths our souls, because of our faith in Jesus Christ and the strength He gives us through His grace.
Yes, we have trials. We have wounds and brokenness. We are sinful and fail often. We have suffered greatly. We could find plenty of reasons to each sit in our own corners of pity and sorrow.
And yet…. We have within us an indescribable joy.
This joy is not to be mistaken with happiness. To feel happy is an emotion. Joy is deeper and more powerful. It is a spiritual, lasting effect of life lived for a bigger cause. Joy is the abiding, lost-lasting, little spark of light in the heart that knows all of this is for a bigger cause. All the pain, suffering, death, or inconveniences of life can in the end benefit us. They can help us to become better people. They can be the mountains we overcome, the giants we slay, and the race we run well… all to give God glory and to be able to say to a dark and doubting world, “see what can be done through His grace?”
And the world will look at us, as we’re smiling through tears and trials and wading through every emotion (good and bad) under the sun, and ask, “why are you still joyful?”
It is indescribable. It is glorious. It is divine.
It’s isn’t an escape from the difficulties of life, it is an embrace of them. An elevation of them. And I wouldn’t want it any other way.
You Are Enough
Don’t ever forget that okay? You are beautiful and precious and deserve good things — and I can’t tell you that enough! Look I even dedicated a side-bar-box-thing to it. God has a plan and a purpose for your life and He died and rose again because He wants to spend forever with you! Okay, read on. Important reminder over.
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God & Spirituality
“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul.” Psalm 23:1-3
If we attach God’s blessing to our fertility and our families it would mean I am more favored by God than the woman next to me who can’t have children. And we know God’s love doesn’t work that way.
And the salt in the wound of my tender millennial christian heart was when the “things” meant more to people than people. When the rosary and the praying of it was more important than looking and seeing your neighbor’s need wasn’t a holy card but a smile and a hug.
So yeah, I’m not the perfect Christian. Not always the loving, well-behaved daughter of God. But He is big enough to handle my big, complicated emotions. He is understanding enough to listen to my angry ranting and raving.