March 18, 2014

Finding joy.

     This is without a doubt the craziest week of the semester for me! Today I have a big French test, and by the weekend I need to have a video that's between one and five minutes filmed and edited for my digital media class. I also have to be in at my internship for an extra day this week, and I have three mandatory sorority events that I need to be at. I had to go to a mandatory meeting for sophomores at my college yesterday, and Thursday is my class advising appointment, so I need to have my schedule in place for the fall. Plus there's my off-campus bible study tonight, and two babysitting jobs later in the week... plus my regular every day stuff! (And more homework that I'm probably forgetting.) Whew!

     Normally a week that's this busy would stress me out to the max, and probably put me in a bad mood. When I get stressed it's often hard for me to stay positive, and the smallest things can upset me. But this week, I'm staying positive. Why? Because I heard the most amazing message on joy this past Sunday.

   
Beautiful flowers at our hotel in the Dominican Republic.

     I have been blessed to find a wonderful church here in Charlotte that I look forward to attending every Sunday. But from Tuesday until Thursday night of last week, I had a terrible headache (probably technically a migraine), and I was still catching up on stuff over the weekend, as well as recovering. Long headaches tend to suck the energy out of you! So I decided to stay in from church this weekend. But I still wanted to hear a message, so I decided to go through my downloaded podcasts on iTunes. Sometimes when I have a free moment I like to browse the religious podcasts on iTunes and download ones that look interesting.

     I found a two part podcast series on joy in my iTunes library. I had listened to part one last summer, but part two was waiting for me. The podcast was apart of the Back to the Bible series, which are podcasts sponsored by Christian radio organization Oneplace.com. Back to the Bible is lead by bible scholar Dr. John Munro.

     This podcast encouraged me so much. I felt like everything that Dr. Munro was saying was exactly what I needed to hear! The key bible verse cited during the program was from 1 Peter.


     "Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and even though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy..." -1 Peter 1:8 NIV


     Dr. Munro spent much of part two of the podcast series discussing the difference between happiness and joy. To summarize, happiness depends on circumstances and mood, but joy is something that is more meaningful and something that believers should always be filled with! Just think about it, we are able to have a personal relationship with the LORD of the universe! How amazing is that! He is always with us, and He cares so deeply for us. These are things that I have known now for a long time, but when Dr. Munro said that and then explained how that should be a source of joy for us, something suddenly clicked in my head.

More flowers from the DR.

     True joy is something that I think I need a bit more of in my life. I have always tended to let little things get to me, and sometimes even if one thing goes wrong it can ruin my whole day. Since hearing this message on Sunday, I have been perpetually reminding myself to "find joy" in everything. And so far it's been working! This past Monday was a super long day for me, and it was also raining and 34 degrees out. I am beyond sick of winter weather, and it is getting quite late in Charlotte for temperatures this cold in the daytime!! I also found out on Monday that I was mischarged at a restaurant recently so that is another thing that I have to deal with. But through everything, I managed to have a positive attitude, and I was even able to make time to do a devotion in the midst of the business.

     Both parts of the broadcast on joy that I listened to can be found on the archives for Back to the Bible. You will have to select "November 2013" for the month, and then the program I listened to was "Joyful Living: Be Thankful" parts one and two. This program really touched me, I honestly barely even got into all of it in this blog post!


     My blog has been getting to be a bit more fashion and beauty focussed lately, and those are two things that I love to post about! But I am a Christian, and I never want to let my faith disappear from this blog. I love writing these types of posts as well!

     Also, any prayers for me to get through my crazy busy week would be appreciated!! Seriously, I can't remember the last time that I had a week this crazy. No sophomore slump for me! ;-)


     xoxo Miss ALK

7 comments:

  1. Great post girl! It's so great to see you talking about your faith. I think a lot of people stray away from that when it comes to blogging!

    xx
    Breckenridge Clare
    www.whimofthesouth.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. Prayers headed your way girl!! Thanks for your email, and I will try really hard to reply to you soon! And thanks for such an encouraging message today. The differences between happiness and joy I tend to forget sometimes...a lot of times actually! I think it's all about priorities in life and not letting the little details get in the way of your faith, family, friends and passions.

    Thanks for the encouragement!! :)

    xo, gina

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great post! Prayers headed your way. I graduated from college two years ago and your post reminded me of those crazy busy days. :-) My agenda saved me from being too stressed. My church was on campus and sometimes I would slip into the chapel for 5 minutes of quiet. Finding joy in these days makes it worthwhile! Enjoy them, time goes by so quickly! ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Yes! Love your heart here! It can be hard to distinguish joy from happiness, but there truly is such a difference! We can have joy and peace because of Jesus even when times are hard and happiness is fleeting. Thank you for the encouragement today!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Love, love, love this post!! Your faith truly shines through in this post :) And I will definitely be praying for you and your hectic schedule - you can make it!!

    ReplyDelete
  6. it was a crazy week for me too! thanks for the reminder that focusing on our faith is so important!

    ReplyDelete

Thanks so much for reading Southern Belle in Training! Comments make my day- so feel free to share your thoughts on this post! I read each and every comment.
If you have a question in regards to one of my posts, or just want to say hi, the best way to get ahold of me is by e-mailing me directly at: rainbowflash94@yahoo.com. I am better about responding to e-mails than blog comments sometimes!
Xoxo