Thursday, November 27, 2008

Feeling Joy!!!

It’s Thanksgiving Day, the bustle of the day’s activities have dwindled. My Mama is over at her house settling down and getting ready for bed. My sister is up at the hospital cherishing her precious baby girl swaddled in tubes and monitors. My Papa is at the next door neighbor’s house eating Thanksgiving dinner with them, and I am here at Papa’s house in the quiet. It’s amazing… I complain about living by myself all the time… yet whenever I’m around people… I somehow always end up drifting off by myself.

I was sitting on the couch reading a book that has Bible teachings in it (just a few minutes ago), and my heart was embracing every word as I shifted from the book to my Bible. God’s Word is just so special to me. I think the reason I always end up by myself is because that is when the Lord chooses to speak to me. And not to just speak to me, He chooses to have a conversation with me and I find Him in my heart the most. I know that Christ dwells in us once we accept Him...and truly…tonight I FEEL Him there. I FEEL Him here… I FEEL Him with me....He is tangible, for sure. :)

I think it is the sweetest feeling in the world. It really just makes me have this feeling that gives me chills, makes me want to just bawl, yet at the same time just dance all around my living room. Whoever might think the Lord is not One who will be your company, hasn’t ever experienced Him. I’m coming to feel His presence more and more each day, and it is absolutely WONDERFUL! Especially now. :)

I think that it is so awesome….even through prayer. Use to be....on special days like today, my family would have someone bless our meals. God was never “out of the picture,” but He definitely wasn’t the center... and for sure.. I didn’t have a relationship with Him. I mean… two years ago, I would always look at the ground when someone would ask “Who wants to say the blessing?”.. NOT ME!!!! In fact, sometimes someone would squeeze my hand as a prompting to get me to volunteer. Nope… i wouldn't.. they could squeeze all they want, my mouth was staying shut. Even when I was Chaplain in my sorority (and it was my position to pray).. When asked to bless the meal at our formal I refused and had someone else do it. Well now... on this side of salvation.. Now I don’t mind. In fact, I enjoy it, because I enjoy inviting the Lord to supper. I enjoy blessing His Holy Name and making Him known...especially to my family.

It just ruined me… when my niece “expected” it and was eager to pray. Just flat out ruined me. I was a teary-eyed mess. AND…there isn’t anything more challenging than trying to NOT cry, when your just so incredibly blessed to tears.

It just takes one person to invite Jesus to the table. I also think it is awesome that it just takes one person to invite Jesus into the room or the conversation or the moment. Colossians 4:5 &6 says,

“Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.”

It is incredibly awesome that my family will bring up the Lord whenever I’m around. I’m not saying, it’s because of me… I mean, I pray that they talk about Him even when I’m not around. All I’m saying, is they didn’t use to mention Him as often as they do when I’m around…now. But, whenever they choose to bring Him into the conversation… you can bet I don’t miss a beat!!! It brings me so much JOY to glorify His Name…. and you can bet I am just busting at the seams whenever I get the chance to praise Him in front of my family….by their own initiation of the subject!!! Yes, it brings me great joy to bring Him great joy… which in turn, sows joy into the hearts of others...including my family.

Ah, Yes…….Joy…. Did you know that the word joy can be read over 150 times in the Bible!!! What’s cool? I've learned that the Greek word for joy is chara, which means exceeding gladness. (busting at the seams, leaping, shouting, uncontrollable laughter, tears!!) In a Bible Study, Beth Moore teaches that it is where your heart just swells with gladness where you can literally feel your heart swelling with joy. Joy is both a noun and a verb. However, focusing on chara, it is a noun… which means IT IS tangible. Isn’t that AWESOME?!?!?! Tangible, the dictionary has a definition that I love. It says “real or actual, rather than imaginary of visionary.” I'm looking at it this way… when someone encounters “joy” in the Bible (and there is A LOT of it!)… it’s not just reading it.. It’s experiencing it.. It’s REAL, it‘s definite, it‘s possible to touch!! You’re able to literally feel it!!!!!

Same thing when you allow the joy that you receive from scripture to spill over onto everyday life…. You’re able to experience the joy of the Lord… and not just experience it as a casual encounter .. You’re able to FEEL it.. You’re able to FEEL Him!!! WHEW!!! Yep.. I'm in LOVE!

I’m able to FEEL Him….. oooohhhh.. so awesome. The promise is found in His Word....

"Draw near to God and He will draw near to you..." James 4:8

It's a promise....Yep...Go on now...find out for yourself!!!

I'm so thankful today... on this Thanksgiving Day... that I'm able to FEEL the Lord's charis....greek for grace. I'm able to feel His grace, which, in turn, causes joy. Therefore, I literally feel the joy of the Lord. AMEN!!!

Love y'all! Happy Thanksgiving!


Devoted said...

Sister, you have said so much in this little post. I can feel your joy oozing out of the screen! Shout for joy all the earth! God bless you for you have surely blessed me this day.

Devoted said...

Miranda...I have presented you with an award...please jog on over to my sight and pick it up. I have bestowed this award upon you because your writing inspires me. Thanks!

Devoted said...

How funny! I actually posted it sometime this morning but started working on it last night. I just did not feel good and saved it as a draft. So it showed I posted it yesterday...hummmmm

I did not know you have only been a believer for one year...HAPPY BIRTH of the best kind DAY!