Sunday, August 28, 2016

Choosing Joy

This past week was awful. It had consisted of my grandmother getting admitted to the hospital. And personal health catastrophes that have recently ensued have rendered me completely bed-bound, rarely able to sit up without triggering Mast Cell Disease reactions. Between depending on others for practically everything and the stress my family and I are facing, it is frustrating for all parties involved.

In the midst of the horrible week, I began Bible Journaling. The verse reflected upon is the following:

"A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones." - Proverbs 17:22
It is incredibly easy to become angry and bitter due to life's hardships. Last week I was the guest of honor at multiple pity parties, inviting my friends "why me" and "misery" too. Briefly allowing negative emotions to take their course is normal, even healthy, but they will never get us far if we dwell on them for prolonged periods of time.

This is similar to Proverbs 17:22. The context of the verse is not literal. Our emotional state, like joy or sadness, is not actually "medicine." The metaphor applies all the same though. A spirit crushed by feelings lacking in joy are not good medicine. In fact, they are quite the contrary. A dose of positivity, however, is good medicine.

Overall, our emotions are a choice. As Christians, God's desire for us is to choose happiness and joy, regardless of the suffering sin has brought to this world. All aspects of my life are definitely not how I wish them to be. My body may be in an impaired, faulty condition, but I have the option to divert my attentions to the good. After all, God is the Great Physician and He prescribes joy. I cannot expect healing when not abiding by the doctor's orders.

So, my focus for this week is to choose joy. Who else is up for the challenge?