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  • Writer's pictureKandi Swift

Joy for the Journey

You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

When packing for a trip or vacation, what are some must-have items you wouldn’t dare travel without? Yes, I know, some of us think we need to take EVERYTHING, and it’s obvious we do when it comes time to lift the suitcase out of the car. However, many things we travel with are more of a desirable than a necessity. They make the trip a little more comfortable, but wouldn’t keep the trip from happening if we didn’t bring them along. Things like five pair of shoes instead of two, a favorite coffee mug (guilty), or a hair dryer when the hotel provides one. When we travel, we also look for ways to pack efficiently, fitting the most we can into the smallest amount of space to keep from having to carry along extra ‘baggage’. The experts suggest techniques for packing clothes so they are more compact, or to bring along dual-purpose items so we can travel with less.


Life is a journey. It’s not a trip we chose; we’re on it because we are alive. Sometimes the road is rocky, sometimes it’s smooth. Sometimes we’re taking it at an even pace, other times it feels we’re racing through. Today’s scenery might be breathtaking, but last year’s may have been heartbreaking. No matter what the trip is looking like, there are some things we shouldn’t consider traveling without.


As a believer in Christ, we have the benefit of making this journey with the best traveling companion there is. He never leaves or forsakes us and is always ready to provide direction and assistance for the next leg of the journey. Not only do we have direct access to Him, but to the amenities He has made available to us if we choose to accept them. He offers us peace, grace, comfort but the one essential we should always be sure to make room for is joy. Why? Because His word tells us that if we have the joy of the Lord, then we also have strength (Nehemiah 8:10). We need strength for this journey, wouldn’t you agree? As I was writing this I thought, “Wow, we get a two-for-one deal when we choose joy.” But joy is actually so much more than that. It’s like one of those all-in-one multipurpose tools. When we choose joy, not only do we receive strength but we overflow with hope (Romans 15:13). But that’s not all! The bible also tells us that a joyful heart is like medicine (Proverbs 17:22). It’s pretty incredible that by choosing joy we are also choosing strength, hope and health.


I encourage you to take a look at the things you’ve chosen to bring along as you navigate life. Get rid of the excess baggage that is unnecessary and weighing you down and make the conscious decision to choose joy for your journey.


Scriptures

Romans 15:13 (ESV) – “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.”


Proverbs 17:22 (ESV) – “A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.”


Nehemiah 8:10 (ESV) – “….for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”


John 16:24 (ESV) – “Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.”

 

Prayer:

Lord, I thank you for this incredible journey called life. I am grateful that You don’t leave me to travel it alone, but are always right there offering me the essentials necessary for making this journey a successful one. Today, I choose joy and everything that comes packed along with it.

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