Looking Forward with Joy

1934048_972597089468147_6048637888669489313_n“There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.” – C.S. Lewis

This is the quote I now have on my kitchen chalkboard. I love this quote. It is a goal I want to aspire to, to fully believe it. I am spiraling back down into a list of unhealthy symptoms and I am losing joy. How fickle I have become. I am being lead around by my circumstances instead of by the One Who is in control of them.

“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.” James 1:3

I continually fall back into a pattern of thinking that tells me this is a punishment of some kind. Instead I should see this as an opportunity to grow more to be like Christ. I am alive another day, what a blessing that is. That alone is cause for joy. On top of that, He loves me enough to put me to the fire…to burn off the old and to be refined. A pure heart is what is important. A heart that is full of joy and gratitude. What holds me back?

“Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship”. Romans 12:1

Too often I tell myself I will never go back to the life of illness I lived before. If I believe that my life now belongs to Him, I cannot hold certain parts of my life away from Him. He has to have it ALL, that includes my health. So, would I be content with being sick from now on? Right now I can honestly say NO!  Oh, I still have a long way to go.

Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am in. Philippians 4:11

I want to be like Paul. I want to be content in whatever God has for me. That is where true freedom lies. Joy is found there as well. I don’t think being content means we settle for something but we follow Him wherever He leads trusting that He knows what’s best for us .

The past is over and what’s done is done. I’m becoming convinced that it is not a bad thing though. I believe God will take things from us in order to give us something better. Is this what I am doing now, holding on to something meaningless and cheating myself out of His goodness? I am reminded of a illustration I heard a long time ago about the daughter who clung tightly to her cheap strand of pearls not knowing that her Father had a real strand of pearls he wanted to replace them with…if she would only trust him. Trusting Him equals joy. It makes no sense to hold on to worthless things in our lives when God has something priceless to give us. Sure He can heal us, but our mistake is believing that healing only comes in physical form. He is much more concerned with the spiritual..the heart. Healing is so much more than we can imagine.

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