It was a Monday. Carole Mayhall's husband had been gone for a week and wasn't due to return for another week. The weather was dark and rainy. Nothing loomed to brighten the horizon.
That day is vivid to Carole because on that day she learned something about the joy of the Christian life. When a difficult day comes, she knew she was to "consider it joy," but how in the world could she do that?
Her personal definition of "grace" is "whatever I need whenever I need it." And on that gloomy Monday what did she need? She didn't need strength to lead a Bible study or wisdom to counsel a friend. She was stuck at home without a car, and the day looked like one blah day. She needed the "bubble of joy" in her heart to be able to feel the truth of the verse, "This is the day which the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it" (Psalm 118:24).
She could not flip a switch to get instant joy. She needed God's grace.
So she prayed, "Lord, what I need today is Your grace to give me joy, a fruit of the Spirit. I ask You for a happy heart."
And God answered. She reported that it was an exciting day. Not because anything special happened, but because He made the everyday things special in themselves.
Thank you, Lord, that because joy is a fruit of the Spirit we have every right to expect it as a part of our lives with You.
"The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song" (Psalm 28:7).
Please pray for the preparation leading up to our next Come to the Fire council meeting. Our next meeting will be a time of planning for 2012.