January 4, 2012


Last year I challenged myself to simplify. I wanted to focus on one word for the year and live that out in the everyday. Last year I worked hard to accomplish the goals I set out to focus on for the year, and I know I'm better for it. Our family is better for it as well.

In thinking and praying about my word for 2012 I really felt a stirring in my heart about the word JOY!

At the start of last year our church closed down without notice, it was a sudden change to our lives and in our ministry. There was a lot of confusion that surround this decision we had no control over. When the church closed, Orion and I knew that we'd be OK regardless of what had happened or the emotions surrounding this decision.

That event led us on a journey of trying to figure out what was next for us? We moved to Arizona two years ago to take a job at that church, and now that it was closed it left us answering the question of what's next?

I'll be honest and say that the last year was very hard for me in the regard of not feeling "settled." There was an un easy feeling in me most of the time feeling like I couldn't really unpack our bags here so to speak because I was unsure of whether or not this would be our forever home.

I know that it might sound weird to some, but for me we've experienced so much transition in our lives since 2008 that I am just ready to be in a place long term.

No more moving. I want to create a home somewhere for my family and enjoy this life.

In the last six months I've really been evaluating myself, my heart and my emotions. I realized that I was trying to find my happiness in the circumstances instead of finding JOY in where ever the Lord has us at the time.

Happiness is based on good things happening to us.

JOY is eternal! Knowing that no matter what happens or doesn't happen;

The Joy of the Lord is our strength. Neh. 8:10 (NIV)

This year the word I want to focus my heart and life on is JOY!

Choosing JOY in every circumstance. Choosing to find the JOY in everyday things and not be so caught up in what does or doesn't happen.

Find JOY in my relationship with the Lord knowing it is and always has been enough.

I know that when I am focused on eternal things, and joyful towards others they catch it too. It makes a difference in me, in my home, and in others.

I wanted to choose a Bible verse for the year to go along with my word for 2012, I choose this verse:

Be joyful always, pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

It really sums up in every single way how I am feeling, and how I want to live this out. No matter what this year I want to choose JOY.

Be filled with JOY.

Take it with me.

Enjoy this life and the journey that God has us on.

Today I want to challenge you to take a look and see how you could be more joyful in your own life.

Maybe it's towards others.

Maybe your children or spouse.

Maybe you're going through a hard time and you need to choose to be JOYFUL in your circumstances. Change your attitude and choose JOY today. 

The Lettered Cottage


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