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When I got up this morning, I really wanted to write something for a motivational Monday post. I struggled and struggled with it all day. The right words just would not come to me.

I went to a memorial service tonight. It was the wife of a man that goes to our church. I didn’t really know his wife. I had only met her a few times. This man however, comes up and talks to my disabled child every Sunday at church. He is not scared of Kyle pinching him or biting him. He always asks Kyle to give him a hug or knuckles or a high-five. As much as I apologize when Kyle is aggressive & in a bad mood, this gentleman never cares.  He always says it’s OK or don’t worry about it. He calls Kyle his buddy. Not a Sunday goes by that we are both at the same service that this man doesn’t come over and make it a point to talk to Kyle before and after service.

I am on our email prayer chain at my church. I got the email that his wife had passed away. Even though I didn’t know them much more than him talking to Kyle on a Sunday morning, goink to her memorial service was something that was important for me to do.

His wife  enjoyed scrapbooking. She had all these little embellishments made for scrapbook pages. She had sold some of them and donated the proceeds to our orphan out reach program. They had several of these on the table along with pages that she had made of her friends and family.  We were told to take one of the embellishments to remember her by. Mom are as were immediately drawn to the one shown at the picture in this post. On the top of the  embellishment was written “May your joys be as deep as the ocean, your sorrows as light as it’s foam.” I looked over all the other ones on the table, but I kept coming back to the same one.

As we all were seated, the memorial service began. There was not a large crowd there. Just a small gathering of family. By family, it was mostly their church family.  He and his sister-in-law sat in the front row. As the songs were played, his arms were lifted high praising God and  rejoicing in his glory. This is a man who loves his wife deeply and he had just lost her. Despite this, he was praising God through the songs.

And it hit me in the middle of that service, it is about joy. It is about praising God through our struggles. It is about focusing on the hope of what is to come, not of the trials and troubles that we are going through now.

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When I got home I started reading some scriptures. I came across this verse in Romans 15:13  May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. 

That’s what it is. Yes he is mourning his wife. But he has hope of what is to come. He knows his wife is in heaven dancing with Jesus. He knows that one day he’ll be there with her. And so he praises God. He rejoices! He lifts his hands to the Father that has saved him. To the one that gives him hope. To the one that brings him joy.

We were never told this life is going to be easy. But what He does tell us is that He is with us every step of the way. If we trust in him, He will fill us with joy, we WILL overflow with hope.  It doesn’t mean that he will cure us of whatever is ailing us here on earth. Not while we are here anyway. That is hard for us to understand. Why do kids get cancer?  Why do babies die? Why does someone with stage four cancer live and someone with stage one cancer pass on? Why does someone that spends their life serving others fall on hard times?

We could why? Why? Why? until we were blue in the face. It wouldn’t change anything. God has a perfect plan and that is his plan. He knows what is best for us just as our parents knew what was best for us and we know what is best for our children. We have to trust our Heavenly Father just as we expect our children to trust we know what’s best for them.

So as I close out this motivational Monday, let it continue on through the rest of your week. Make a choice to focus on joy and hope. We are all going through something. That something seems big to us, and to us it is big!  Give that big thing to God, trust him to know what is best for you, to have your best interest in mind when things happen, let yourself become overflowing with hope Of what is to come and let the joy flow like a river.

If you are struggling, let us pray for you. Let us pray with you. Send those prayer request in and let other stand with you!