Finding Joy in the Everyday

Have you ever found yourself not being excited about Christmas? Of all days, who doesn’t get excited about Christmas? I was asked the other day, after a Christmas Eve service, if I was excited for Christmas? And my response caught me off guard! I found myself not really being able to answer the question appropriately. It was a little awkward for all the people standing around me. And then I played it off and said, “well you know it’s just not the same when you don’t have little ones in the house”. And I went on my way!

That thought just would not leave me. Well, of course, I’m excited for Christmas, but not the commercialized Christmas. I would guess that most people think about the HO HO HO, family and opening presents when you say “Are you excited for Christmas?”. It’s been a particularly hard season in my life over the last few years & definitely this year. “LIFE” this year has been rough and it’s not looked like the pictures of this commercialized Christmas. I attempted to choose to focus on what has really been on my mind this Christmas and that is the birth of Jesus and how HE saved my life. Literally and Emotionally. But there was still that burning question inside of me.

Why could I not be exited for Christmas?

Psalm 46

God is our refuge and strength,
    an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
    and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam
    and the mountains quake with their surging.

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
    the holy place where the Most High dwells.
God is within her, she will not fall;
    God will help her at break of day.
Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall;
    he lifts his voice, the earth melts.

The Lord Almighty is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress.

Come and see what the Lord has done,
    the desolations he has brought on the earth.
He makes wars cease
    to the ends of the earth.
He breaks the bow and shatters the spear;
    he burns the shields with fire.
10 He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
    I will be exalted among the nations,
    I will be exalted in the earth.”

11 The Lord Almighty is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress.

After thinking about this for a little while, it dawned on me that there has been many times when I wasn’t excited for a holiday or another special celebrated day. I can remember vividly a conversation that I had with my husband just before my 50th birthday. You see, my 30th and 40th birthday came alongside a couple of pretty traumatic events in my life. So I wasn’t really excited about hitting another decade and what that special celebrated birthday might bring with it. But he was quick to remind me of the blessings that we had received during those times. Yet for some reason my mind wanted to go to those traumatic events. My 50th birthday came and went and as normal “life” just happened as well.

As my mind was reminiscing about the past, I was brought to the fact that my next decade birthday is coming up in couple of years. It will mark the 40th year decade of birthdays with some hard life. I starting wondering if something with the 40 is at play here.

Psalm 40:1 I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry.

Jesus spent 40 days and nights being tempted by Satan. Then there was the flood to wipe out humanity because of evil, that lasted for 40 days & nights. And in Numbers 32, it reads that 40 years marks a new generation. You may be asking what does this have to do with not being excited about Christmas. Nothing really, that’s just where my mind went. Yet, the not being excited part does tie everything together. Lack of Joy! That is where Satan wants me to live. Why do I have dread? Why do I have worry? Why?

Yes, I’m an over thinker! I get something on my mind and I have to settle in it for a while. Until it seems God always reveals something to me.

I think. I read. I search. And yes, I google! With this 40 theme running around in my head, I google, “what does the bible say about 40?”. And I found several things. Here is the find that I found most intriguing. The spiritual meaning of 40. Angel number 40 is a message from your angels reminding you that you are safe, well-protected, and loved. Your guardian angels are near and all you have to do is call upon them for help achieving your goals and manifesting your desires.

I’m starting to get excited about my 60th in a couple years, I think to myself!

And then I flash back to what my husband reminded me of a few years back, “We have had many blessing! That is what you need to be focusing on!”. And YES, as bad as it pains me to say, “He was right!”. There have been many blessings over the last 30 plus years. The marriage of my sweet husband, the renewed health of our son, the redeemed life of our son, beautiful marriages of our sons & daughter in laws, 5 “GREAT” grand children, the reunion of my birth father & myself and so many more that I can’t even begin to list.

So even though the last 30+ years have brought some hard times, the blessings have far out weighed them. And with the spiritual meaning of 40, I would say that the next decade celebrated birthday and all my other celebrated holidays will also come with many blessings.

I’ve learned, yet again, through this process of getting faced with a question that brought to light the lack of joy, that Satan was loving, only because of outside influences. So I’m asking the Holy Spirit to renew my soul and fight off Satan’s attaches. Help me to wake each day with my blessings being the foremost on my mind. Seeking out God’s word and remembering Jesus’s sacrifice that is here for me to grasp tightly. Knowing all too well that “life” happens but they are passing moments and in the end, God’s blessings will always far out weigh those moments.

I will scream from the mountain tops that “Jesus is my Lord!”.

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