“Faith is the art of holding on to things in spite of your changing moods and circumstances.” [C. S. Lewis]
In the past twenty four hours I have had two friends ask me to tell them about my life. Both of these individuals have been such positive influences in my life that naturally my sassy ass responded with something along the lines of “are you ready for me to break your heart?” I didn’t want to break their hearts and I’m certainly not here to break yours. To sum up the past three months I have been using one six letter word “shitty”. Yes, things have not gone exactly in my favor. Yes, my best friend is moving 1,400 miles away next week. And yes, there have been days where I never wanted to get out of bed. Shitty things have been happening in my life, my moods and circumstances have been changing, but my life is by no means shitty.
I’d be lying if I told you that I hadn’t gotten angry at God more than once in the past year, don’t worry He already knows. He knows I’ve been angry, but He also knows where my heart is. You see, the biggest disconnect in my life is between my head and my heart. I know His truths in my head but feeling them in my heart is a completely other story. He knows this too. He knows I struggle with this daily. That I struggle to believe the truths that I am worthy, I am beloved, I am treasured, and I was created perfectly in His image. Well, that’s where faith comes in. He gives the most incredible promise in Hebrews 13:5 “Never will I leave you, never will I forsake you.” Never is a pretty strong word, but our God is also pretty dang strong. With all the ups and downs this past year, my faith is truly the only thing keeping me above water. I am able to hold onto the truths because I know that He will NEVER leave me.
I’m not one to make New Year’s resolutions, honestly I think they’re stupid. I don’t want to make any promises for my future, I want to change the way I look at my past. The past year has been full of blessings that always seem to get clouded over by the lies swirling around in my head, full of opportunity and a crazy amount of joy. That’s right, in what consider to be one of the shittiest years of my life I have experienced the most joy. I have found the simplest things to bring me pure joy. Joy that has only become a part of my life since this summer when I allowed God to completely fill that God shaped hole in my heart. This list is just a little taste, but it shows the simplicity. The simplicity of things I now find the greatest joy in.
- Playing on the swings after a long day of studying
- Friends that let you be real with them over coffee
- Walking my dog
- Relaxing in a spa under the stars
- Going to school for something I absolutely love
- Knowing that no matter what happened during my day, after I manage to climb three flights of stairs, I get to go home to one of the most important people in my life
No one will take my joy away. Not a single person. This promise was made to you and me in John 16:22. “Now is [our] time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away”. From now on when people ask how things are going, I hope I am able to tell them about the things that bring me joy. I hope I am able to look back on this crazy messy year and find all of the amazing things He did in my life. My moods are definitely going to change and so are my circumstances, but my faith in a God that lets me be angry at him after he promised to never leave my side is going to bring me joy much longer than anything else in this world. Thanks for the last 365 days and cheers to the next.