Note from Jill: We are officially starting the posts from guest bloggers. A big thank you to Krista Frohling for joining us here at Joy in the Small Things.
Alegría is the Spanish word for Joy and you can see it beautifully sewn onto a burgundy wool banner that adorns a wall in our Argentine home.
I’ve been told that joy is not fleeting. That joy is deeper than happiness. And that joy comes when you have Jesus in your heart. If that is all true – it’s always with you, it’s more than a giddy emotion, and it comes with Jesus like a toy with a happy meal – then where is it for me today when I don’t want to get out of bed? Or last month when my friend was diagnosed with breast cancer? Or last year when our family of 6 (including the dog) made a 5,000 mile move only to discover the work to be done was based entirely on a pack of big, fat, ugly lies?
Jill asks, “Krista, where do you find joy?”
In order to find anything, I must first search. Searching implies initiative and proactivity and wherewithal. On the days I’d rather stay asleep; when I get unexpected, unfortunate news; when a big, fat man tells me another big, fat lie; when someone dies without knowing Jesus… these are the times I have to actively begin walking down a pathway I call the pursuit of joy.
Thankfully, I can generally find joy because of the knowledge I have in the fact that Jesus loves me in spite of my craziness and the beautiful grace that He extends to me in the midst of my wretchedness.
The beginning of John 1:16 reads “Of His abundance, we have all received grace over grace….” Grace over grace. Out of His abundance. We have received. This joy, this grace, this abundance: these are generous, poured-out, love-gifts. They are lavishly and freely given. To me! So, even though I must actively search, I can also hope and walk slowly with hands wide open, ready to receive. And this is exactly where and how I take the first few steps on the pathway of my joy-search.
I am also able to find many other sources for joy as I continue putting one foot in front of the other: spending time with my silly kids; conversing deeply or laughing conspiringly with my husband; hanging laundry (just joking); focusing on the good in those around me; encouraging others in their God-given gifts; and writing out my thoughts, thanks, and prayers.
I like joy and I do find it in the small things. Especially when I’m looking with eyes-hopeful and hands-wide.
Krista Frohling lives with her husband and their 3 sons in Córdoba, Argentina where, as a family, they are trying to share the hope of Christ in practical ways to the material poor around them. She sometimes shares details on their blog at www.familiafrohling.blogspot.com.