Wake up, hit snooze. Make believe that you don’t really have to go to work today, and sleep the extra few minutes.
But then the alarm goes off again, and responsibility and obligation pull you out of bed. Your body aches, you’re tired, and there’s nothing in the day ahead that seems to be a good reason to get going.
You go to work, putting a smile on your face. You ask how others are, and if they ask you, your reply is either good, or okay. Because most of the time, you can sense people are busy and don’t really want the story of why today is just not good. Or, you can’t trust that person to not share what you’ve told them in confidence.
What if you’ve lost your passion for your work? Or think that you should be doing something else, dating someone else… doing anything but what you seem to be stuck doing. You are drained, and the short periods of time you spend reading the Word or praying aren’t filling the gaping hole in your heart.
Apathy can sink in, or these feelings can lead to depression and anxiety.
What happened to the joy? How can I find it again? Am I a bad Christian because my heart isn’t so joyful this week?
The joy is still there. Because God still lives in you through the Holy Spirit. You’re not a bad Christian; you are a drained Christian that needs to be refreshed with living water. And that comes from time with the Lord… without distractions.
Romans 12:12 says, “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” It’s a short verse, but packed with meaning. Don’t forget about hope. Christians have so much hope, because we know, no matter what, that heaven is where we are going. We have hope and joy from salvation. We have peace that passes all understanding because we have a gracious, loving Father.
Patience. Ah, yes, such a tough one for me. And patient in affliction? Can I pass? Probably not. Without the affliction, my faith would grow stagnant. I would become apathetic, and be in a worse state spiritually. He lets the challenges come so that we grow stronger, and so that our trust in Him grows. When you’re in the midst of a battle, you cry out to God. Why is He not answering? I want to tell you He is. But this is when the patience comes into play. Rescuing us immediately from the trial will not help us in the long run. Ever noticed how He drags us out of our comfort zones? I can’t tell you how many times I thought I could not possibly do what He seemed to be asking… but through prayer, and Him equipping me, I got through all of them. And I’m still facing some of them.
Faithful in prayer. Don’t give up because it seems He doesn’t care. He does, because you’re His child. He is waiting with open arms, ready to help you through the situation. Maybe it’s our hearts that don’t want to accept the type of help He offers… or we are looking for a different solution than the one He gave. So pray that your heart would be humbled before the Lord, so that your prayers are fervent and effective.
A Grateful Heart
It’s still okay to hit snooze. Goodness, I know I always want more sleep! But keep your heart focused on God, and the peace, joy, and love He freely gives. Have a Spirit and heart full of gratefulness for the blessings you do have. Reach out to others who are hurting, lend an ear, and encourage them. Who knows? You may just find that you are encouraged also. It’s okay to share struggles with close friends, but always bring your requests, fears, and depressed thoughts to the Lord. He is the ultimate Joy Giver.
Love in Christ,