Always be joyful and never stop praying. Whatever happens, keep thanking God because of Jesus Christ. This is what God wants you to do. I Thessalonians 5:16-18
Always. Never. Whatever. Those are really big words. I know I sure don’t live up to them. I’m joyful a lot and try to hold onto joy (which isn’t the same as happiness) when it’s hard – but I also lose it and fall into fearful or anxious or resentful or controlling. I pray… well… not “always”, that’s for sure. I tend toward what my youth pastor (back in the day) used to call “popcorn prayers” – just popping little prayers up to God on and off whenever I think of it. Some days that’s a lot. Some days, not so much. I thank God for a lot of things, but I also complain about a lot of stuff. Rarely do I thank God for the stuff I complain about.
But, the other day I had a conversation with someone about how hard it is sometimes to know God’s will – and yet here, in three very simple sentences, we are told “this is what God wants you to do”. Now, I have a feeling that God knows perfectly well that none of us will actually always be joyful, never stop praying, and thank him no matter what happens. But what if he had said, “This is what God wants you to do – try to be joyful unless things really stink, pray when you think of it, and thank God for the stuff that makes you happy?” That’s pretty much what we do on our own. It’s not life-changing. God’s way is.
When I decided to face the cancer by putting it into God’s hands and trying to follow the Bible as closely as possible, it became the most amazing and life-changing journey. I know there’s harder stuff coming, and I sure appreciate you all not forgetting to pray for me. It really does make a difference.
By the way, my hair started falling out today, but not too much. I think I have a few days of looking like me left. One or two anyway. So I will rejoice in that, and pray that I don’t get too sad when it goes, and thank God that it’s only hair and it will grow back, and the fact that it is falling is just proof that I am being cured. Now what am I going to do with all my mousse and conditioner?