finished reading the book, Kisses from
Katie, and let me just say – WOW!
Katie is a remarkable young woman who is living the surrendered life. (You
can follow her story at kissesfromkatie.blogspot.com) This is a story about
obedience to Christ, perseverance, and sacrifice. Something she said leaped off
the page and into my heart. She said, “We must know sorrow to be able to fully
appreciate joy. Joy costs pain, but the pain is worth it. After all, the murder
had to take place before the resurrection.”
pondered this truth, I realized just how accurate it is. Before I really knew
suffering, I had happiness in my heart, but I never fully experienced joy until
I encountered the power of God in some of the darkest trials. Joy is costly –
but so very worth it!
this is what James meant when he said to “Consider it pure joy when we
encounter various trials…” Anyone can feel happiness at times, but joy is a
fruit of the Spirit. It is impossible apart from the power of God in our lives.
God has chosen to manifest joy in our lives through our pain.
It is after
intense labor pains that the joy of giving birth is felt. Knowing that the
labor is not in vain, but will give birth to new life makes it all the more
bearable. The same is true of other hardships. Our sufferings are not in vain.
God wants to make something beautiful out of our hurts, and He wants to create a
joyful Spirit in us in the meantime.
can be so oppressed by life’s problems that my focus is on my circumstances
instead of on my Lord. Though my circumstances may not change, when my focus
does, then I experience joy. My ultimate
hope is that there will be a day when all my earthly pain will be resurrected and
I will spend an eternity in the joyous presence of our Lord!
Labels: Inspirational, Joy