When Ali Edwards challenged me to choose a word for 2007, the word “joy” immediately popped into my head.
I think there were a few reasons for this.
Three years ago, at our church’s women’s retreat, we were put into small groups for the weekend. In my group, we were asked to speak God’s word sitting to the person beside us. Cindy Penner spoke the words to me: pure joy.
This totally resonated with me. Not because it’s what I felt I had or expressed in my life. But because, that was my desire. To be a person who has pure joy.
When attempting to define joy, I found most of the definitions to contain the word happiness. Which I get. But I also think that joy is something more. Something deeper. Something lasting, that isn’t dependant on circumstances. It’s just there, regardless of what’s happening around us.
Along with the word, I thought I’d choose a verse to go with it to be my verse for the year. So, I went to Bible Gateway to search for a verse. And found 333 references for joy in the New Living Translation. When I started reading some of them, especially in Psalms, I found something interesting:
Almost all of the verses that resonated with me connected joy to God. Being in God’s presence. Seeking Him. Trusting Him. Being full of joy in Him.
So, this is my word for the year: joy. And though I’ve chosen seven verses (so far) that I’d like to meditate on throughout the year, my chosen verse for 2007 is Psalm 16:11: “You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever.”
This is what I want to be: a woman of joy. Not because my life is great and everything is going well. But because I'm finding joy in being in God's presence and in trusting in Him.