Joy Comes in the Morning
I tend to dream in vivid detail. There have been a handful of times that the Lord used a dream to encourage or warn me. Last week, was one of those times.
In this dream, my husband held my hand and helped to navigate us through dry land, there was a battle waging and we were being chased. We ran from place to place and settled after a long journey in a church building. We were drawn to the front altar and collapsed trying to rest. I heard the words, “joy comes in the morning.” My heart began to pound as I remembered that I was supposed to be speaking that morning at church. I was frazzled and a mess from the long night. I ran around the church looking for a quiet place to gather my thoughts, but things only got louder as folks were prepping the building for the service.
I desperately wanted to hear more from the Lord. I can’t only say, “Joy comes in the morning.” What does that even mean? I felt intense stress about standing up to speak, but I sensed that I was being called out of my comfort zone. Called to stand and trust that the words would flow - that I was to deliver a message. "Joy comes in the morning."
Before my eyes opened, the words kept rolling through my head, " Joy comes in the morning"...over and over again.
I looked up this verse from the Bible once I was awake and was so moved by the words. They convey God’s heart to protect and provide. A reminder of what he has done and a promise of what he will do. A call to praise his name regardless of what the night holds, believing in faith that joy will come in the morning. A new season is coming.
Psalm 30: 1- 5
“I will extol you, O Lord, for you have drawn me up and have not let my foes rejoice over me. O Lord my God, I cried to you for help, and you have healed me. O Lord, you have brought up my soul from the grave; you restored me to life from among those who go down to the pit. Sing praises to the Lord, O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name. For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.”
How easy it is to lose perspective. To forget all that we have been rescued from. Eternity awaits us. A new season is upon us. Yes, in this world we will have suffering - but HE has overcome the world. So we can rest knowing that these moments of waiting as battles wage all around us...they are brief. Joy comes in the morning!
He doesn’t promise that tomorrow morning when we wake up all our sorrows will be gone, but he promises that his favor will last a lifetime. As followers of Jesus we can anticipate eternity with Him.
God has been drawing me in deeper. I will often cry out, “Lord use me, use my words for your glory ” and then I quickly freak out when it’s time to step out of my comfort zone, into the opportunities he gives me. I am reminded once again that it’s not about me, it’s about eternity. God has called me to make disciples and fearlessly lead them towards eternity.
Growing up my mom would say, “In light of eternity”. She had heard the phrase from a speaker and it greatly influenced our lives. When I needed a shift in my perspective she would say, “Jaime, In light of eternity does this matter?” Or “ In light of eternity, how will this decision affect you and others?”
The heart behind the message is this: Every person is headed to eternity, either with the Lord or without Him.
As followers of Jesus we have the hope of living in eternity with him, a promise that joy is coming! We also feel compelled to reach out to those around us, knowing they too are headed into eternity.
Really in life, what matters most - in light of eternity?
When we keep our eyes fixed on this promise that eternity is ahead of us and that our time here on earth is so very brief….it propels us into a balanced perspective. It infuses us with purpose and joy to keep running the race.
God has given gifts to equip us for this journey of life, one of those is Joy! The Bible says that, "the joy of the Lord is our strength.” So not only does he promise that a new season of eternal joy is coming - he also invites us to dip into His joy now, to fuel us for these days we have on earth! We can choose joy.
We recently sat around my mom’s kitchen table. She and my stepfather Chris, suggested we spend some time praying for each other. Chris has been fighting stage 4 cancer for 2 ½ years now. He's living beyond what the doctors expected, we give God ALL the praise for this and continue to ask for complete healing!
He suffers greatly, he pushes through daily pain as he continues to fight. He chooses joy. That morning Chris shared some words around the oak kitchen table, I hope to never forget. As he talked, he did so with deep conviction. “It’s not about this world, it’s NOT about this world, it’s not about healing. It’s about believing until the end. The Bible says, that it’s impossible to please God, without faith. So I want to believe by faith - until heaven.”
He spends hours every morning choosing to fix his eyes on eternity and receive more faith for the present moments. He chooses faith. Faith in the whole word of God, regardless of the label that’s on his medical chart. Choosing to let go of doctor reports, fear and unbelief. Why? Because, it’s impossible to please God without faith. Because it’s not about this world and it's not really about healing here on earth. Someday when he meets Jesus face to face, he longs to have pleased Him, knowing he believed in faith until the end.
As you read this, I don’t know what giants you are facing or what your heart desperately hopes for, but I do know that God’s word is true. I also know that our time here on earth will include suffering.
Take courage, in light of eternity, these days are short, press in and stir up your faith, it’s not about this world! A new season is coming!
I long to see you delivered from the chains that are binding you friend and released into a life of freedom, that compels you to run this race as a fearless warrior. Allow your mind, body and soul to rest in this truth, Joy will come.
I started a prayer journal this year as a way of being more intentional. It is an honor to open the journal and embrace each name in prayer. What’s on your heart and mind that distracts you from an eternal perspective? Is there a battle in your life that is wearing you down and you need increased faith or increased joy? Please send me a message today, I'll write your name down and believe with you for breakthrough! I believe that this word of promise and truth is for YOU!
As we wait, let’s praise His name, let's choose joy. Regardless of what the night holds, together let’s declare in great faith that He has the victory - Joy comes in the morning!