Think of all the beauty still around you and be happy. — Anne Frank
May blessings! With all the sadness in the world right now I thought I would bring you a little sunshine to brighten your day. The month of May is upon us and things are flourishing. My garden is proof of this. The grass is green, the roses are in bloom, and there are buds everywhere opening up! I love walking in my garden. But today, as I was admiring all the flourishing plants, I sensed a sort of paradox.
Read this heartwarming excerpt from the book—Pawz & Pray: Finding Joy in the Journey with God, Family, and Furry Friends. 130 Uplifting Stories and Devotions for Dog Lovers!
Married, a mother of two children, I finally felt we were ready for a family pet. My husband conceded (well, I didn’t ask him. Oops!). And so, we brought home a cuddly Labrador retriever puppy! Goldy was our sunshine during rainy days, and the stable, strong force that made us all feel continually protected and loved. I stand in awe of all the wonderful things she taught me.
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!”
Are you struggling to find joy today? Recently I found myself in that struggle for joy, and was encouraged by a short yet powerful Bible verse. The apostle Paul writes, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” (Philippians 4:4). I find it interesting that the word “rejoice” is repeated twice at the start of this verse. The writer must have known how hard it is for us to rejoice at times, and offers strong encouragement. Yet this encouragement comes from the object of our joy. Notice he says, “Rejoice in the Lord...”
As I mediated on the Lord and all the good things he had done for me throughout my life, the heaviness began to lift and was replaced by sweet peace. If you’re feeling anxious today, fight that battle by refocusing on Jesus, and rejoicing in who he is and all he has done for you. The Psalmist writes: “Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name. Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me” (Psalm 103:1-2).