Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Choose Joy Day 7 -- Joy through Community

"Our ways of dealing with pain, frustration or sadness… they look different. We have different ways of getting to the joy. We travel different roads that don’t have the same kind of scenery. We reach our destinations at different times and at different paces.

But we all go through it. I don’t like to be discouraged or unhappy, but the exhaustion and sadness and frustration find me anyway. Just like it finds you. There is no way around hard times… they hit us all. And no matter what your plan is to keep your joy, no matter how many routes there are to get to the destination, we all wind up at the same place with the same travel companion.

We travel the journey with God at our side, whether we always see Him there or not. We are never alone, whether it feels like we are or not. Do whatever it takes, for however long it takes to get to your joy.

Just keep walking in faith. It’s the only thing we all have to do the same." ~Sara Frankl

There were times when I would call Sara frustrated or feeling sad...needing to talk to her. In the middle of the conversation I would stop and apologize. Apologize because I knew that she was working through her own struggles and I felt like I was adding more burden to her life. Sara would stop and lecture me right then and there. She always assured me that my trials and hurts were no better or worse than what she was going through...they were just different. They were mine and therefore they were important to her and to God. 

One of Sara's fears was that people wouldn't be authentic with her and share their life...the good and the bad...because they didn't want to be a burden to her. She wanted to be a part of the community of those she loved...through good and bad times. That is how she was blessed, when she could be a blessing to others.

How many times do we do that? Apologize for needing someone. Someone to talk to. Someone to comfort us. God made us to be in community with each other.  He told us to live this life together, as a community. 

Community helps provide us with the friendship, fellowship and encouragement we need. The longer we stay away from developing community with others and with God, the longer the weeping lasts. Once we share our needs with God and others the quicker we can find the Joy that comes in the morning.

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