Over 30 years ago, a wonderful mentor and friend once offered me these wise words as I struggled through a difficult period in my life. He said ‘Lynette, don’t let anyone ever steal your JOY!’ Those powerful words stayed with me and empowered me through the next several years.
Have you ever experienced GREAT loss during the Christmas season? I sure have.
For many years I almost dreaded it when the calendar would flip to November or December. With the heartbreaking miscarriage of a child, the death of my father, my only grandmother, my only sister, two young sister-in-laws, my favorite uncle and aunt. A near fatal car accident that almost took the life of my niece, my husband’s stroke at age 42, financial devastation, the deep loneliness of a separation and eventually the end of my 30 year marriage
Yet I knew God was with me. I felt HIS peace and I was able to keep his JOY in my heart even those times when it was breaking.
This is for certain – living life is hard. But God’s love for us is so very abundant and full. A true gift. I would remember this and it was HIS presence that would not only carry me through the Christmas season, but would help me to celebrate with a heart full of thankfulness and JOY.
If this has been a difficult year for you, I remind you …’Don’t let anyone ever steal your JOY!’ and have a Merry JOY-filled Christmas!
‘The JOY of the Lord is my strength.’