Hey friends! I'm getting back from Hawaii today! I'm thrilled to have Caroline on the blog today. If you don't already know her, I know you'll love her as much as I do! I know Caroline in person too and have loved getting to know her through our blogs as well! She is always so encouraging and I learn so much from her! Go for it, Caroline...
You can follow Caroline here:
Kelli and I met years ago at a friend's party, but lost contact until this past year when we found each other's blogs! I am so thankful we have reconnected and have been so blessed by her friendship. I love the title of her blog: A Deeper Joy.
Colby and I have waiting to expand our family now for 2.5 years and finding joy and contentment in the hard times is a topic I'm passionate about sharing with others. I love Nehemiah 8:10, which says, "the joy of the Lord is your strength." This verse really summarizes the past few years for us. We desire children so strongly and haven't had them yet and are in a place where ALL of our friends are parents already (or so it seems), but we still are full with joy.
But, how? Jesus! We know that Jesus is the only person who can solve what we are longing for. It won't be babies, a job, a husband, or money. It's God alone. I believe when we truly realize how blessed we are, we find contentment. Contentment is not the fulfillment of what you want, but the realization of what you already have. There is purpose to every trial and every waiting period and God's purpose isn't for us to grow bitter, angry, or jealous. He wants to use the trial to refine us. He wants us to be content in ALL circumstances. Even though you might not understand the why or understand the what, continue to trust Him. Let His strength be your joy. Allow your trial to be used for God's glory. Let it be a time where you find hope and joy from Him, not from what you are waiting for.
So what are ways to find a deeper joy while struggling? Read the word. Spend time with Him. Instead of focusing on what you want, but don't have, celebrate and thank God for all the blessings that you do have. You will find that when you shift your perspective, you will be renewed with a new joy that only the Lord can give!