Hi there, welcome back!
Continuing our discussion on Joy. I came across this talk given by the prophet, President Russell M. Nelson, of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, in the October 2016 General Conference. You can find the whole talk here. Joy and spiritual survival, it’s AMMMazing. So go read it!
The one statement that stuck out to me was this:
“The joy we feel has little to do with the circumstances of our lives and everything to do with the focus of our lives.”
I absolutely love that statement. It’s so beautiful. you see, we have the power within us to feel joy when we choose to focus on the Savior. He is the one and only true source of light, love and true joy. Granted, sometimes we can not change our circumstances but we can choose where our focus will be. Even amidst the struggles and the trials of life, we can seek to feel joy in the little seemingly unnoticeable things.
I remember several times as a young mother when I was deep in the throngs of depression. Every menial task seemed like it would overtake me. It’s so hard to explain to someone who has never gone through depression. But the feelings of doubt and inadequacy were so real and raw. It was so hard just to get myself out of bed in the morning. But I had 4 littles that needed their mama and that’s the only thing that kept me going. That, and my trust in the Lord that He had a bigger plan for me.
One morning everything seemed to be going wrong. I felt I couldn’t even function normally. As I reached up to grab a box of cereal, it came crashing down. Cereal scattered across the kitchen floor. And all I could do was just sit down in the middle of the kitchen and cry. “I can’t do this Lord”, “Please help me,” I pleaded.
As I opened my tear stained eyes and started to clean up the mess I hear pitter pattering across the floor. “It’s ok mommy”. All at once there it was an incredible, indescribable feeling of peace and joy that enveloped me as I scooped my daughter into my arms and just hugged her. At that moment, I I felt the arms of the Savior around me like a warm blanket. I know He was sending me a message that if I focused on Him and forgot the little unimportant things, in this case, cereal scattered on my floor, lol, that He would be there to pick up the pieces and help me get my life back. That simple moment of joy, though brief, carried me through many moments as I learned how to battle my illness.
Life is not easy, all of us have things that we bear and struggle with, but if we can put our focus and trust in the Lord. He will guide us…. always. And we CAN have moments of joy scattered across our lives instead of cereal scattered across our floor.
Focus on the Savior. He is the source of all joy!