Today’s Joy is written by Ruhiyyih Rose MacBradaigh. I have known Rose for several years, and we have seen each other through dozens of life’s ups and downs. If you struggle to believe in miracles, please ask me about my friendship with Ruhiyyih, because our relationship now is nothing short of a beautiful work of the Holy Spirit. I asked Rose to write a post about Joy not only is she more entertaining that I am as a writer, but I have seen her take sorrows and turn them into joy on more than one occasion. She is a great woman to learn from, and I hope you hop over to her blog and read more.
Thinking about what joy means, I often think of laughter, smiles, and a happy heart. I also reflect on the joy of a long-awaited answer to prayer.
I had the joy of marrying the most wonderful man last autumn. Just three weeks shy of our wedding day, my husband was laid off from his job. I had just moved to the area to be near him and was looking for one. It was a scary, anxiety-ridden time. I am grateful that the two of us are naturally joyful people – and funny too. Oh did we handle a lot of the curve balls that came our way with laughter! We ended up having an amazingly wonderful and inexpensive wedding day – full of joy and laughter that would give us many happy memories years from now.
The Lord blessed me with a job within two weeks of our nuptials, and my husband continued his job search. Everyday, we had to choose joy over our circumstances. We shared a car, and when it had problems, we prayed like crazy and trusted God. He took care of us in spite of the enemy’s attempts to steal our joy.
I experienced some health problems for a couple months over the wintertime. I had not yet met the requirements for health insurance at the time, so it was very scary. Still, we did what we could to take care of the issues and remain prayerful – and joyful.
By springtime I was finally insured at work, got a raise, and my husband decided on starting an inexpensive online graduate program. He had searched for a job long and hard, but just was not finding anything. Just when he was to start his first grad course, he got word that he was hired at a solid nationwide online retailer doing customer service. It was perfect for his graduate school track, and the hours were fitting. We celebrated with hugs, tears, and prayer when we got the word that he was hired! Our joy ran up and over and bubbled out everywhere!
Now we look back at that season – the first year of our marriage – and stand amazed by how God took care of us and walked with us. There were so many anxious moments – but what I will always remember is how we maneuvered those scary financial times with remembering where true Joy comes from – our relationship with Christ, and walking humbly with God. He gives us joy that lasts, and is not driven by circumstances. For that, I am eternally grateful.