It's almost as if they created that display just for me! LOL!
Some time in early 2008, I found this gorgeous purple planner for 2009 that had beautiful embellishments with a focus on JOY. That was the first year that JOY was my Word of the Year; I knew that well before 2008 came to an end. I remember talking with a young lady (a student) about how God plans things out and prepares us in ways we'll never know or understand and may not even understand afterward.
It was in 2009 that the Lord first gave me Psalm 45:7:
"You love justice and hate evil.
Little did I know that in November of 2009 I would be at death's door--literally. It took all the JOY I had in me and then some to make it through those days when my family and I thought I was going to die. Walking around with an ostomy bag is NOTHING to be JOYFUL about, let me tell you, whether you are in your late thirties as I was or older in life. Using the bathroom into a bag on your stomach while teaching makes finding JOY in the day-to-day livings was a struggle too difficult to put into words.
Add to that battle the fact that I have continued to struggle over the years with the losses of my babies. That burden has always weighed heavily on my heart and soul and made finding JOY more difficult than normal. But I clung to God's promise of His anointing oil of JOY--more than anyone else. If my God had promised it, He would fulfill it.
I may always struggle with finding and receiving the full JOY that God has for me--that He has anointed me with. But that's ok because as I struggle with finding JOY, I am seeking JOY--I am learning about JOY--I am receiving the fullness of JOY.
So I will continue to have JOY as my Word of the Year for 2018. It may be my Word of the Year forever and ever, amen and amen. Wouldn't that be wonderful?!