There was a certain sweetness to the recent She Found Joy Ladies Night Out conference, held here in Jacksonville on October 2nd. However, a friend who attended posed a question to me the next day that had me bothered.
She asked, “So how do we find more joy?”
I thought, Huh, I guess we didn’t really address that specifically.
I had to really think about this, I mean, what brings more joy.
As I sat on the edge of the guest room bed, clean linens in hand ready to put on for the next set of visitors, it came to me.
Joy is to see God.
Specifically, seeing and recognizing God at work. And for myself, knowing God is using me. It could be an uncomfortable circumstance I’ve endured that I can be vulnerable about or perhaps a gift or talent He’s given me. But where I see Him work and where He allows me to work with Him, catching a glimpse of that, well, that’s pure, raw, joy.
I mulled over my friend’s question and then thought about my Twitter profile.
My profile reads in part: Married to the funniest man on earth, mom, girly girl, … lover of Jesus, and connector of women.
Yes, connector of women.
That doesn’t mean I’m well connected, rather it means I connect women well.
If someone has a need I always seem to know just the right person who can meet it.
It’s a gift (albeit, a weird one I know).
I didn’t ask for this gift. It’s neither glamorous or showy and I get no accolades for it. But when I connect two people, the one in need to the one who meets it, I get a visual of God at work using me in something that is far bigger than I could imagine.
And in that moment, I find joy — unadulterated, sweet joy!
The joy comes from fulfilling a purpose. And it’s as natural as taking the next breath.
We all have these gifts and talents (sometimes we call them our individual quirks). Most of us have multiple ones (talents not quirks).
Figuring this out, it came easy then to think of others working seamlessly along side God. Their niche in the world being used in just the right places to fulfill His purposes.
My friend Richerria for example, she looks at a plain round table like an artist looks at a blank canvas and creates color and beauty on dull surfaces.
My friend Susan, happily travels into the scariest parts of the world to teach women how to teach women about Jesus because she can and does it well.
Gretchen, allows the messes in her life to unravel the messes in the lives of others.
And Lisa is the walking peacemaker. She diffuses tensions with ease when she walks into a room.
She doesn’t do it on purpose. It is her purpose.
And each one can see their worth in God’s work through them. And that’s one way they find their joy.
There’s no magic formula to discovering more joy. It’s not something you can find with a Google search. However, if you are following hard after God, joy will find you.
So to answer my friend’s question, how do we have more joy?
By looking to Jesus daily and asking, “What do you have for me to do for You today?”
Then being willing and ready to do it.
“Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6).