“Joy Comes In The Morning” by William & Gloria Gaither

This song is special to me.  It goes along with Post Gaudius Luctus – Joy Succeeds Sorrow.  My husband’s quartet used to sing this song.  My mom sent me the music to this song to encourage me early on, and the fact that my parents named me Joy gives it even deeper meaning to me.  Shortly after my first laparoscopy – my first “darkest hour” in discovering I had Stage IV endometriosis – my mother-in-law called me and said she was listening to this song in her car and she just cried as she realized this song was for me.  “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” Psalm 30:5b

Joy Comes In The Morning

Words by William J. & Gloria Gaither

 

If you’ve knelt beside the rubble of an aching, broken heart,

When the things you gave your life to fell apart,

You’re not the first to be acquainted with sorrow, grief or pain,

But the Master promised sunshine after rain.

 

To invest your seed of trust in God in mountains you can’t move,

You have risked your life on things you cannot prove;

But to give the things you cannot keep for what you cannot lose

Is the way to find the joy God has for you.

 

Hold on, my child, joy comes in the morning;

Weeping only lasts for the night.

Hold on, my child, joy comes in the morning;

The darkest hour means dawn is just in sight.

Hold on, my child!

Post Gaudius Luctus – Joy Succeeds Sorrow

I would like to wish away the tears that come unexpectedly, without warning, seemingly without reason. 

Yes, I cry for the baby girl – we – my husband, my son, and I want to add to our family but aren’t really pursuing. 

But is that all my tears represent, after all this time?

I remember the tears, just like the tears someone is crying today. 

I cry for others.   

I cry for the woman who is viewing her ultrasound for fibroids, cysts, or endometriosis – instead of viewing an ultrasound of a growing embryo in her uterus. 

I cry for the woman alone in the waiting room of her OB-GYN waiting for her next pap smear – instead of waiting to hear the measurements and heartbeat of her growing baby.

I cry for the woman who miscarried after IVF – instead of hearing the hCG levels after IVF were rising beautifully in the right direction. 

I cry because I have been there.

But then I pray for them.

I remember the joy. 

I pray for joy for them, too.

Post gaudia luctus.  That’s Latin for “joy succeeds sorrow.”  Several verses in Scripture confirm this.     

Jeremiah 31:13b “for I will turn their mourning into joy, and will comfort them, and make them rejoice from their sorrow.”

Matthew Henry’s Commentary on this verse: Those are comforted indeed whom God comforts, and may forget their troubles when he makes them to rejoice from their sorrow, not only rejoice after it, but rejoice from it their joy shall borrow luster from their sorrow, which shall serve as a foil to it; and the more they think of their troubles, the more they rejoice in their deliverance. 

Psalm 126:5 “They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.” 

Matthew Henry’s Commentary: Suffering saints are in tears often; they share in the calamities of human life and commonly have a greater share in them than others.  But they sow in tears; they do the duty of an afflicted state and so answer the intentions of the providences they are under.  They shall have a harvest of joy.  The troubles of the saints will not last always, but when they have done their work, shall have a happy period. 

Psalm 30:5b “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning. 

Matthew Henry’s Commentary: If weeping endureth for a night, and it be a wearisome night, yet as sure as the light of the morning returns after the darkness of the night, so sure will joy and comfort return in a short time, in due time, to the people of God. 

“Our joys are made better if there be sorrow in the midst of them.  And our sorrows are made bright by the joys that God has planted around about them.  The flowers may not be pleasing to us, they may not be such as we are fond of plucking, but they are heart flowers, love, hope, faith, joy, peace – these are flowers which are planted around about every grave that is sunk in the Christian heart.” 

Streams in the Desert, April 25

 

I’ve No Cause For Worry Or For Fear

Three weeks ago today, I found myself in my car, parked outside a medical building that I had not been to in over 10 years.  Although it was years ago, I remember sitting in my car in that same parking lot, crying about results from an exam I had just had.  I wrote about that in Joy-Tester.

I was unable to hold back my tears.  My emotions were right on the surface, only this time the tears were for a blood test I was about to take.  I tried to evaluate my response and wondered, “Why am I losing control this time?”  It was simply worry and fear.  Worry about the future.  Fear that the test might reveal results I didn’t want to accept, which led me to worry about what could happen after that.  As a young child, I trusted Christ as my Savior, yet didn’t my worry and fear translate that I couldn’t trust Him with my current or future circumstances – with whatever His will is for my life?

Fear is defined as a strong emotion caused by anticipation of danger or anxious concern.  Worry is similar, meaning mental distress resulting from concern usually for something impending or anticipated.  Yet as Carolina Sandell Berg penned in the song, Day By Day, “I’ve no cause for worry or for fear.”

Why?  Because faith’s sweet consolation is my comfort.  “God never gives feeling to enable us to trust Him; God never gives feeling to encourage us to trust Him; God never gives feeling to show that we have already and utterly trusted Him.  God gives feeling only when He sees that we trust Him apart from all feeling, resting on His own Word, and on His own faithfulness to His promise.”  (Streams, September 26).  Faith alleviates my feelings and emotions.  Faith moves me forward to the next step.

Picture a little girl who is scared of the path ahead, but still, she looks up and takes her daddy’s hand and starts to walk with him.  She doesn’t have to be afraid.  She just needs to trust.  We must put our hand in the hand of God just like that and trust He will lead us, even if we don’t know where we are headed.

“The clinging hand of His child

makes a desperate situation a delight to Him.” 

Streams in the Desert, October 14

I have since gotten the results of my test, and although there are still unknowns, I can honestly say I have not worried or been fearful about the situation anymore.   I’ve been where you are: desperately wanting to have a baby, and now that I’m on the other side, it is easy for me to say, “have faith, rejoice, and trust.”  While that is true, this recent experience brought me back to a place where I could remember what it’s like to be IN that moment where you are right now.  I had to trust Him then and I have to trust Him now.

“Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow,

it only saps today of its joy.”

Leo Buscaglia in Zig Ziglar’s Something to Smile About

Be A Self-Encourager: Encouraging Yourself Through Scripture

David gave us the example of encouraging himself in the Lord through solitude in prayer to God.  Because of his distresses, many of the Psalms were written.  When going through a difficult day or a trying time, this may be the only book I want to read.

 “This book (Psalms) brings us into the sanctuary and directs us into communion with God, by solacing and reposing our souls in him, lifting up and letting out our hearts towards him.”  Matthew Henry

I am sharing some of my favorite Psalms of petition, promise, and praise.  You need not be afraid of opening your heart to God.  He hears you.

Psalms of Petition

Psalm 39:7 “And now, Lord, what wait I for?  My hope is in thee.”

Psalm 56:3 “What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.”

Psalm 61:1-2 “Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer.  From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”

Psalm 102:2 “Hide not thy face from me in the day when I am in trouble; incline thine ear unto me: in the day when I call answer me speedily.”

Psalm 119:49 “Remember the word unto thy servant, upon which thou hast caused me to hope.”

Psalm 138:3 “In the day when I cried thou answeredst me, and strengthened me with strength in my soul.”

Psalm 141:1-2 “Lord, I cry unto thee: make haste unto me; give ear unto my voice, when I cry unto thee.  Let my prayer be set forth before thee as incense; and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.”

Psalm 143:7-8 “Hear me speedily, O Lord; my spirit faileth: hide not thy face from me, lest I be like unto them that go down in to the pit.  Cause me to hear thy loving kindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee.”

Psalms of Promise

Psalm 27:14 “Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.”

Psalm 30:5b “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.”

Psalm 37:4-5 “Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.  Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him, and he shall bring it to pass.”

Psalm 42:11, “Why art thou cast down, O my soul?  And why art thou disquieted within me?  Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.”

Psalm 46:1 “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”

Psalm 84:11-12 “For the Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.  O Lord of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in thee.”

Psalm 112:7 “He shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his heart is fixed, trusting in the Lord.”

Psalm 145:19 “He will fulfill the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save them.”

Psalms of Praise

 

Psalm 21:2 “Thou hast given him his heart’s desire, and hast not withholden the request of his lips.”

Psalm 30:12 “To the end that my glory may sing praise to thee, and not be silent.  O Lord my God, I will give thanks unto thee for ever.”

Psalm 86:10 “For thou art great, and doest wondrous things: thou art God alone.”

Psalm 106:1-2 “Praise ye the Lord.  O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: for his mercy endureth forever.  Who can utter the mighty acts of the Lord:  Who can shew forth all his praise?

Psalm 118:23 “This is the Lord’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes.”

Psalm 126:3 “The Lord hath done great things for us; whereof we are glad.”

Psalm 136:3-4,23 “O give thanks unto the Lord of lords: for his mercy endureth forever.  To him alone doeth great wonders: for his mercy endureth forever.  Who remembered us in our low estate: for his mercy endureth forever.”

Psalm 145:3-4 “Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable.  One generation shall praise thy works to another, and shall declare thy mighty acts.”

My favorite Psalm of Promise and Praise!

Psalm 113:1-9 “Praise ye the Lord.  Praise, O ye servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord.  Blessed be the name of the Lord from this time forth and for evermore.  From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the Lord’s name is to be praised.  The Lord is high above all nations, and his glory above the heavens.  Who is like unto the Lord our God, who dwelleth on high.  Who humbleth himself to behold the things that are in heaven and in the earth!  He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth the needy out of the dunghill; That he may set him with princes, even with the princes of his people.  He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children.  Praise ye the Lord.”

“Be Still, My Soul” by Katharina von Schlegel

Lately, I’ve been listening to Meditation – Hymnscapes Volume 3 by David Huff/Crossroads Music.  I am enjoying the instrumental hymns, whether it is for personal devotions, creating a peaceful environment in my home, or in my yoga class, which is where I first heard the CD.  The familiar hymns have ministered to my soul, such as “I Surrender All,” “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus,” “Count Your Blessings,” and “Just As I Am.”  As I began listening to them all, however, I picked up a hymnal to read the lyrics with which I was not familiar.  The song I have been drawn to lately is “Be Still, My Soul.”

It is a hymn that gives me peace and comfort, as if God is reassuring us as His children not to fret, but to rest in Him.  May the message lift your heart as I share them today.

“Be Still, My Soul”

Finlandia

Katharina von Schlegel

Be still, my soul – the Lord is on thy side!  

Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain;

Leave to thy God to order and provide –

In every change, He faithful will remain.  

Be still my soul – thy best, thy heavenly Friend

Thru thorny ways leads to a joyful end. 

~~~~~

Be still, my soul –  thy God doth undertake

To guide the future as He has the past;

Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake – 

All now mysterious shall be bright at last.

Be still, my soul – the waves and winds still know

His voice who ruled them while He dwelt below.

~~~~~

Be still, my soul – the hour is hastening on

When we shall be forever with the Lord,

When disappointment, grief, and fear are gone,

Sorrow forgot, love’s purest joys restored.

Be still, my soul – when change and tears are past,

All safe and blessed we shall meet at last.

Note: YouTube has many beautiful arrangements of this hymn, both vocal instrumental.  The Hymnscapes collection can be purchased at Mardel or online on different websites.  I purchased Volumes 3 – Meditation & 4 – Prayer together on Amazon.com.

 

Infertility Will Never Leave Me

It had been three years since I set foot in an OB-GYN’s office.  I probably felt the first unexpected twinge as I saw the office name on the door, then another as I walked into the waiting room.  “They’re probably all here for OB not GYN,” I thought, as I looked around at all the women.  I quietly retreated to a corner seat to fill out my paperwork.  As I stood up to give my papers back to the receptionist, I glanced at a very pregnant woman sitting with her husband.  I heard another woman greet her friend as they both excitedly compared due dates.  Then all of a sudden, I felt my eyes water.  “Whoa!  Where in the world did this come from?”  I felt blindsided by my old emotions.

I was relieved when the nurse called me back.  She asked the usual questions, one being, “Have you been on birth control?”  I thought, “Birth control?  I haven’t taken the pill in 14 years.”  Aloud, I said, “No,” then added, “We’ve struggled with infertility for many years.”

My new doctor came in and talked about my GYN issues.  I thought he must be wondering why my eyes are red!  I wanted to explain, “I don’t know why I’m so emotional right now.  I guess you just never get over your infertility.”

I am mommy to a wonderful five-year old and content that he may be my only child.  My last few well-woman visits were with my D.O., and I never once thought about the emotions I didn’t have to experience going to an OB-GYN’s office.

In Proverbs 30:15-16, Solomon identifies “Three things that are never satisfied, yea, four things that say not, It is enough.”  The barren womb is never satisfied.  Matthew Henry’s insight teaches the barren womb is impatient of its affliction in being barren and cries, as Rachel did, “Give me children.”  The reference is to the desire of a childless wife for children.  It is the reason the ache and the yearning never cease.

Before I gave birth to my son, it is the reason I cried every month when I started my period, even if I tried to make myself believe it wasn’t a big deal.  If there was one glimmer of hope – a day late, a feeling of nausea – I would take that hope and then my period would start the next day.  Once I gave birth to my son, I never really cried again when I started my new period every month.  So I thought, I am satisfied.

Although I don’t have the same degree of struggles and I shed considerably less tears, I have realized infertility will never leave me.  It may or may not be as great a yearning, but even if you already have a child, you can still experience this with secondary infertility.  It can hit you at any time.  I remember going to two baby showers two weekends in a row.  I went home feeling happy for them but also sad for me.  You can give it to God, but it is a fact, the ache does not go away.  Just continue to give it to God daily.  He knows our desires.  Trust the experience will not cause you to become bitter.

Just One of Those Songs

I mentioned in my last post that I told my tears, “God is always greater.”  That is the name of a song our choir sings.  It’s one of my favorites.  One Sunday we had to sing it twice – once for each worship service.  It was a week before Mother’s Day and that morning, my husband had told me about a couple in our church who had just announced they were expecting.  I couldn’t remember the last time I had cried through a song.  It was hard to look up, but I tried to smile while singing.  I couldn’t read my music; it was like a blank, white page, blurred from the tears building up and ready to flow.

Later, a friend and fellow choir member had noticed my tears and asked me if I was ok.  She thoughtfully asked, “Is it just one of those days?”  I answered, “Just one of those songs!”  I believe every word of this song and I hope it encourages you as it has always encouraged me, even through the tears.

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