Our Bridge Music leader, Matt Kennedy, did devotions for our staff meeting today. He read a devotional that was written by his wife, Kathy, for a family blog. I was quite taken with it and asked if I could share it with the congregation for one of our devotions. Matt agreed. Below is Kathy’s lovely devotional.
Rejoice always, the scripture says. Always, in all ways. In all things. So easy to do when the path seems clear of obstacles; on the good, ordinary days. Yes, praise be to God. Thank you for this easy road, thank you for friendships that fill my soul, for my family that I cherish, for health and home, for your mercy and grace Lord.
I lay a lot of things at God’s feet. I make decisions and take action and pray a silent “let your plans for my life be the desire of my heart.” With a grateful heart, I thank Him when things go to (my) plan, and when they don’t, with a begrudging heart, I say, “this isn’t what I want, but I trust you.”
Can we have joy and disappointment at the same time? Can we hold both joy and grief at once? When heartbreaking, life-changing, never-will-be-the-same-again grief takes hold – where is the joy? How do we rejoice in the Lord when we can barely take another breath? When the disappointment cuts us to our core? When the thing for which we’ve been praying for months or years passes us by once again? Rejoice always? Even now, Lord?
I think in those instances, it is hope that precedes joy. When the wave of grief pulls us down, when disappointment breaks our heart, it is hope that will pull us back to joy. Not in a moment, not in an hour or a day, but in God’s time, it will manifest from a faraway light in the darkness to the blinding light of God’s love. And then the joy will come. The rejoicing can begin again.
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