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The attack was big – real big. It was the middle of the night in a hotel room in a different country. I was laying in the bed with my husband holding my body tight and close, praying over me. I was hysterical. Weeping. Sobbing. Broken.
So much pain and no where to go. Trapped by the choice to do the right thing. No reaction. No hatred. No defense. Just pain.
I felt myself sinking quickly into despair, surrounded by the hot breath of hopelessness and the silence of isolation. The light of grace and truth was barely a flicker. Time kept ticking and tears kept flowing. There was a choice to be made. Face to face with despair, I had to decide.
Am I who I say I am?
I am a Joy Bringer. I have been changed by the goodness, mercy and love of Jesus and I stand of the firm foundation of joy – and JOY DOESN’T SINK.
That’s the truth. Who Jesus is and what he’s done for me is the foundation on which my whole life is built. It’s not an option, nor is it circumstantial, it’s always true.
It was in this moment of revelation that I had the opportunity to practice what I preach.
Out loud, like a fool, I began to declare the truth. My husband probably thought I was nuts, but I didn’t care. It was a matter of the survival of my soul. Dramatic? Yes. And totally necessary.
It began with TRUTH.
Between the sobs, the coughing, and the snot filled breaths, I spoke the truth. It wasn’t what I felt, but it was what I believe.
Jesus. I need you.
Jesus. You are here.
Jesus you are good.
Jesus you love me.
I kept going.
I began to repent and ask the Lord to highlight what I was responsible for. You see, in moments of strife and pain, we can’t control anything other than what we own. I find it WAY more productive to focus on what I can grow and learn from rather than the things that I cannot change – other people! What people think of me, the injustice of whatever is said, done or believed about me isn’t my problem. I have one problem – sin – and that problem is dealt with first and foremost with Jesus.
I allowed the kindness of the Lord to wash over me as I acknowledged what part I played, and that turned my mourning into gratitude.
Thank you, Jesus.
Thank you Lord for loving me.
Thank you for truth.
Thank you for grace!
Thank you that I will not sink!
As I thanked the Lord for everything around me, I began to come out of the deep and dark hole of despair. I became aware of my husband who was so lovingly interceding for me, beyond words and without judgement. I began to come back to the awareness that, while painful, my situation was not hopeless.
Then I began to REALLY see.
Beyond my failings. Beyond the humanity of people. Beyond my view of the situation in the natural, was the blatant and well crafted supernatural attack of the enemy.
There really was only one reason for all of it. The calling. The increase. The threat. The enemy HATES joy! He hates it because he knows that there isn’t anything he can do once we grab onto the truth that JOY NEVER SINKS! What Jesus has done for us and who he is is the foundation on which I stand. No matter what happens around me, I will never sink below that reality.
Don’t get it wrong, the blows of the enemy sometimes knock us off our feet. The attacks in life can hurt – bad – and our emotional reactions aren’t wrong. But here’s the truth, even if we can’t stand, we can lay – face down – for as long as it takes. We can lay safely on the security of the love and victory we have in the presence of God. That’s hope. That’s joy.
And joy doesn’t sink.
Slowly, I began to rise up. Filled with truth, I saw the situation from a place of victory. The pain was still there but I was stabilized by the joy of hope. Joy isn’t a feeling of happiness, it is a buoyant sense of well-being because of the love of God and power of the Holy Spirit.
Whether you are standing or laying face down, I bless you to grab hold of the joy in Jesus today. And for more encouragement, click here to read Psalm 71. It helped me and I hope it helps you to become joyfully buoyant.
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