“With all my heart I praise the Lord, and I am glad because of God my Savior. He cares for me, his humble servant.” ~ Luke 1:46-48 (CEV)
As this Christmas season comes to a close, I can’t help thinking of all I have to be thankful for. After sharing in my last post about the sadness that darkened so many of my days, I cannot fail to share the joy that now lightens my heart.
It wasn’t that there was no joy before. I still had an innate understanding that my life was good, a heartfelt thankfulness that my family was whole, and relief that, in spite of it all, I was still standing. But beyond the cognitive recognition that I was surviving the storm, the clouds still hovered and I longed for the sunlight.
In his book The Myth of Happiness, Rich Wagner explains that joy is the “constant presence of God inside [us] sprinkled with moments of genuine delight.” His definition speaks to my experience. Though I never doubted God’s presence, I missed those moments of delight.
Today, delight bubbles up inside, reminding me that God does indeed care for me, his humble servant. He didn’t forget me, and he didn’t leave me where I was. He was with me the whole time and brought me through to the other side.
He spoke to me through countless sermons and songs, provided constant support through my family, and refreshed me with the companionship of a dear friend. He kept his promise to stay “close to the brokenhearted and [to] save those who are crushed in spirit” (Psalm 34:18).
He did this for me. He will also do it for you.
Just as the sun continues to shine behind low-lying clouds, joy can be found within every trying circumstance. Just trust that “the Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you,” and never stop looking for that break in the clouds.