Psalm 143:8

Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.
Psalm 143:8

Friday, October 4, 2013

31 Days - Joy chose me!

 Tonight I attended a Women of Faith conference in Portland, OR.  In an arena filled with mostly women, and a few brave men...we worshiped our God with Kari Jobe, laughed til we cried with Anita Renfroe, and heard a message from Dr. Charles Stanley - God loves us, God wants us to be whole.  

 

As I think back over the evening, I remember the thrill of the bass pounding through the room...echoing inside my chest as we sang "We are the light of the world.  We are a city on a hill.  We gotta, we gotta, we gotta let the light shine."  The hundreds of voices raised in praise to our glorious, all-powerful, loving God....the echoes of joy that filled that room HAD to reverberate all the way to the heavens.  

 

Women of all ages.  Women of all backgrounds.  Women with so many different stories.  Women with hearts that ached.  Women with hearts that have been healed.  Women (and those few men) who have come together for a single purpose...to spend time in fellowship and worship of our Creator, the one who knit us together individually...and now corporately.

 

At times, you could feel the pain...dark, dreary.  But then came a reminder of how much God loves...how much He longs to make each of us whole...  And then, you'd see heads nod, tentative smiles begin to grow, hands unclasp in laps, eyes grow bright...  And joy was in that place.  

 

One of the women shared the following verses at the very beginning of the evening: 

 
Psalm 126:2-3

2 Our mouths were filled with laughter,
our tongues with songs of joy.
Then it was said among the nations,
“The Lord has done great things for them.”
3 The Lord has done great things for us,
and we are filled with joy.



And that's how it was in that arena tonight. We were filled with laughter. We sang songs of joy. We thought of all the things the Lord has done for us...all the things the Lord can do...all the things He wants to do for us...and we were filled with joy. As we joined together in prayer, hundreds of heads bowed, hundreds of hands holding the hand of someone in the next seat, hundreds of mouths whispering, hearts crying out...I could feel waves of emotions running through that room, through me. And overwhelmingly, over the top of it all....joy.


And I thank God for the opportunity to be in this place this weekend. To look forward to hearing Ann Voskamp and the other speakers tomorrow share what God has put on their hearts this weekend, and to worship with MercyMe. I thank God for the friends I came with and the friends I will make.


Tonight I didn't have to choose joy....it chose me.  The Lord has done great things for us...for me.  And I am so grateful!

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