I Choose Joy, Part 2

Wedding Day

I have a confession.

The other day at the salon, I was waiting for my hair to dry and I….I…..picked up one of those gossip magazines! How terrible! An utter waste of my time, I know! I should have brought a spiritual book with me! Okay, I know I am being overly dramatic.

However, in the midst of flipping through wedding pictures and what the world defines as beauty, I found an article offering a ray of hope. It was about average people doing great things for GOD! I couldn’t believe it! It was about a couple on the brink of a divorce after 17 years of a marriage filled with alcoholism, adultery and depression. The wife, rather than hating her life, took her tip money to buy sandwiches and went to pass it out to the homeless. Her husband followed later to help her out and together they founded the ministry, Blessings under the Bridge.

I was really inspired by this woman.

In the midst of her complaining, negativity and hatred of her husband and life, she chose JOY. She chose to do something for others. She chose to hear and obey the Word of God.

I feel sometimes the devil keeps me distracted so that I do NOT hear His voice. Then, I cannot serve my family and others. Then, I cannot Choose Joy.

My spiritual mentor told me, “I am my husband’s source of Joy.”

What a huge responsibility! I can barely choose joy for myself and now I have to be a source of joy for him too?!

On the first night back in Africa from our leave in the States, I decided to choose bitterness. I looked at the bad weather, broken kitchen tap, my “uncomfortable” surroundings, my coffee having salts in the water and tasting terrible, and the list continued! I said one statement to my husband without even thinking. A statement filled with negativity. Filled with Complaining. Forgetting God’s Grace. Forgetting the call God has called us to this tough mission life.

My husband felt sad. He knew God chose a difficult path for us. He wanted us to see joy and enjoy the journey.

The words of my mentor came to haunt me, “I am my husband’s source of joy.” I was not doing a great job.

With my post fresh off the presses about Choosing Joy, I failed. How quickly I can fall into a bad habit again.

It is a hard journey. It IS a hard choice. To choose Joy DAILY!

There is a reason why St. Paul writes twice, “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say rejoice!” (Philippians 4:4). He must have known, as he was writing this from his prison cell, how we must keep choosing joy over and over AGAIN!

In the Sacrament of Matrimony, part of the instructions the Priest reads to the bride say, So you must receive him with joy and cheer, do not frown in his face….” A few quietly snicker at the words, including myself, but there is wisdom in these instructions. My mentor’s words ring true again, I am my husband’s source of JOY!

The lady who served the homeless had a thousand problems but chose to be a source of joy for her husband and family. And in doing so, she saved her marriage and touched the lives of many others!

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. Romans 15:13 

Let’s chat: How are we wives living out the instructions from our wedding day?