With some trepidation, I introduce my word of the year:
Matthew Henry wrote, "A child of God knows no true or solid joy but the joy of God's salvation, joy in God his Saviour and in the hope of eternal life."
Hence the trepidation, as experience has taught me that finding my deepest joy in God's salvation may require some pruning away of lesser earthly joys. (And honestly, this Much-Afraid is weary beneath the pruning shears. Maybe you are too?) The bluebirds who graciously allowed me to take their photos Monday gave me joy; I pray they bring a smile to your face too.
Whether you too are weary and needing fresh joy, or in a season of delightful new beginnings, or perhaps joy seems too far off even to hope for--
May you find joy and strength in the Lord;
May you find your mourning turned to joy, and soon;
May you find joy in the warm, secure refuge of His covering wing;
May you find courage to rejoice in the hope of certain joy ahead according to God's promise, even if you can't see it yet;
May you find joy in the beauty even of this fallen and broken world God created and sustains;
May you find joy in the amazing grace of the salvation won by the death and resurrection of Christ;
May you find joy in the intercession of Son and Spirit, who pray for you and interpret your groanings into the prayers they should be;
May you find joy in the fellowship of the Triune God and of His people;
May you find joy in knowing and being known by Him;
May you find joy in testimonies of lost sinners finding salvation;
May you find joy in sharing the good news of Christ with those who have not heard;
May you find joy in giving to the Lord's work;
May you find joy in the hope of heaven and the expectation of a better country, an eternal rest.
May you find joy, as the Lord will make you joyful,
In Jesus' name,