I don’t think you’d ever disagree that joy is a good thing. In fact, it’s a great thing. It’s something we should all desire, strive for, and dwell in.
But sometimes, things come along that make joy seem downright impossible.
Well, there’s a tough girl way to tackle that.
Situation:You’ve got plans for the weekend. Not something ho-hum like the movies for the fifteenth time this month. Something awesome like rock climbing or entering a free style rap contest. But then your parents drop the bomb that it’s family weekend instead.
Solution: Remember that your life isn’t about you. It’s about loving God and loving people. And way too often the people we need to love the most are those we overlook – our family. So put yourself and your friends aside and choose to love your family with everything you’ve got. Do it with a smile on your face and joy in your heart because, well, they don’t ask for all of your time. So, when they ask for some, give them your best.
Situation: Your friends are fighting. Again. Maybe they’re fighting and you’re stuck in the middle. Or maybe they’re fighting with you. Either way, it sucks.
Solution: “A soft answer turns away wrath…” Proverbs 15:1. Be the gentle tongue. Don’t gossip. Don’t slander. Don’t give into that incredibly tempting fleshy desire to indulge in less-than-godly behavior. Instead, kill ‘em with kindness. Love them. Bring peace to the table of swords. Not only will it help them, it will help you.
Situation: Your room is a disaster. You know it. Your parents know it. The produces of Hoarders probably know it. So your awesome afternoon plans have to take a backseat to dreaded cleaning day.
Solution: Get over it! Hate to break it to you, sister, but you are the one who messed it up. So, first off, admit that. Then crank up the tunes, get your dance on, and get to cleaning. And do it well. And try not to let it get that bad again
Situation: You’re broke. Again. No gas for your car. No weekend fun money. You can’t even order off the dollar menu at McDonald’s, let alone hang out at the mall with your friends.
Solution: Like before – get over it! You don’t need money to have fun. You certainly don’t need new stuff to have fun. In fact, in order to combat that terrible “I want! I want! I need! I need!” mentality – simplify. Get rid of some things. Ask people for rides or ride your bike. Remind yourself that you don’t need stuff to make you happy.
Situation: Someone you love is hurting. Divorce. Cancer. Moving. Whatever it is, they are hurt and you are hurting for them. Or maybe you’re the one who’s hurting. Maybe all these other situations seem trivial compared to what you’re going through.
Solution: Cling to Jesus. Seems cliche, right? Well, it’s true. Cling to Him with all your might. Print up artsy fartsy Bible verses and post them as far as the eye can see. Listen to uplifting Christian music. Close your eyes and pray, even if all you can get out is His name. He’s the only One who can restore joy in a situation like that.
And trust me…He will.
Question: What situation or situations tend to rob you of joy the most? What have you found can combat that? What Bible verses lift you up when life tries to get you down?