Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Choose Joy

Habakkuk 3:17, 18 -- Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior. (NIV)

Given our current economy, it is easy to be unhappy. In a recent Bible study I learned that anything that can rob your joy (the joy of the Lord) can be an idol. You see it isn't any great tragedy that I let steal my joy, but daily irritations.

Do my kids have the ability to rob my joy when they bicker, argue, beg, nag or misbehave. I'm sorry to say yes. I don't have the ability to let things roll off of my back and just smile and say "behave darlings." No, my head spins and my eyes glaze over.

If you choose to ask me that moment if I was joyful, I'd probably slug you in the arm. Thankfully, I do have the willpower to just send my children to their rooms, while I recover from my irritation, but why can't I remain joyful when they're not?

I'll bet most of us, at first glance would say we don't have false idols. I know I don't have any golden images around my house that I worship. At the same time, I know that anything I put before God can be an idol, so I try to be careful to make God the most important thing in my life. I don't "idolize" my kids. I try not to be the mom that thinks the sun rises and sets on my kids' heads.

Yet, they absolutely control my mood. I'd like to add here that I have the formula to stop it. However, if I did, I wouldn't write it here, I'd write it in a book, which would become a #1 best seller, and you all could say "I knew her when she was just a blogger." The fact is, there isn't a "fix" for my kids behavior. They're kids. They're pretty good actually. The problem is me.

Oh, how I hate to type that last statement! The problem is me. Ouch! I need to continue putting my focus on God. I must daily rededicate myself to God. Then perhaps I will have a better ability not to let my mood be controlled by my children. Or the rude check out clerk. Or the driver who cut me off in traffic. get the idea.

So today, I try again to focus on God and choose joy. I challenge you to do the same.



Beth.. One Blessed Nana said...

Thanks for this great post Kelly - I needed this reminder to Choose Joy today!

Sue J. said...

The trouble with joy is that we can't always look at it as being an emotion. You certainly have joy for your kids, even when they disappoint you at times. You can have joy in their great moments and have joy in sending them to their rooms, knowing that you have their best interest at heart through your discipline (which is not pleasant at the time, remember, but brings that great harvest of righteousness!).

Joy doesn't always mean being happy. You can have joy that you serve God and are obeying Him in serving your children--even if you are sad with their current state.

I would say that God, the FATHER, is an excellent example of being sad/angry with His children yet still having that deep-rooted joy, knowing that He is perfecting us!

KrippledWarrior said...

Excellent post Kelly. And look at the big brain on Sue J. You people never cease to amaze me. I am blessed to have such wise friends in my life.

Anonymous said...

Kelly ~ Thank you for this post. I needed to be reminded to find joy especially in the area of child rearing. I could 100% identify with your example.

Thank you for helping me draw my joy from our Lord, our unending source of joy.


is the most infallible proof of the Presence of God in your life!

Choosing JOY [with you] in this season,

D.J. Hughes said...

Nope, no golden calves lying around my house, yet those little irritations that I let rob me of joy ARE idols when I make them more important, at least at the moment, than anything else.

This was a good reminder. Thanks, Kelly!