I would like to file a police report today. I’ve had something stolen. Something valuable that I can’t live without has been taken from me. It was a gift given to me by my father a long time ago and it’s gone. When was it taken, you ask? Well, that’s the problem you see. The thief didn’t take it all at once. In fact, and I know this will sound crazy, I just noticed today that it’s gone. When did I last have it? That’s the funny thing, I can’t remember. I know it was here, just yesterday or last week or maybe last month. But I know its been stolen and I want that thief brought to justice! Can I describe the lost item? Sure. I think. It was a gift; I said that already I know, but the best gift. It was something that matched everything I ever wore. I know that it was perfect to bring into every situation. I took it to school and the store. It was perfect for those fancy occasions and for casual days. When I walked, drove or worked out I always had it with me. Have I filed a claim with my insurance? Not yet, do you think I should? Do I have something to replace it in the meantime? The problem is yes and at the same time NO. I know I have lost it but I’m forgetting what life is like with it. I have tried to replace it but have finally given up. How I am getting by without it? Well, not sure I am very well. But you know what they say, ‘life goes on” and I am getting by. No, I have not looked on Amazon for a replacement. Two day shipping is great but not in this case. What? Oh, yeah that’s a good question, probably should have said that right off the bat. The item missing is joy. I had it not so long ago but like I said, it’s been stolen. Or wait; maybe I gave it away in that yard sale last year? Or misplaced it in that rats nest of an attic under all of the boxes and weight of yesterday’s stuff? Darn, maybe I don’t need to file a report after all? Sorry for taking your time sir, I’ll keep looking. Goodbye.
This season of Thanksgiving may find you in the middle of the fictional narrative above. Circumstance, failure, outside pressures and a very real enemy can destroy our joy. DO NOT GIVE UP! The joy of the Lord is not about our circumstance but about his faithfulness. If your joy has grown dim or quiet look to the Lord this season. Begin with thanksgiving and praise. It is a choice, yes, and as we focus on him in worship we will find joy that goes above and beyond anything we can imagine! May this Thanksgiving season be one filled to overflowing with the joy of the Lord!