When I started this blog, without a ton of thought and a little help from a friend, I named it "The Joyful Jungle."
Cute? Yes. Catchy? Definitely. To the core of who I am? Not so much...it was just a name for a blog.
2011 has been trying. To say the very, very, VERY least.
And one thing that has been tested more than anything is my joy.
Not necessarily the joy I find in Jesus...but more like the joy in everything that Jesus has given me.
Weird? Maybe. I don't know.
He has provided for our family in a way I didn't think was possible...and yet I struggle to find the joy in it, because really, I would have rather had it happen the normal way instead of miraculously.
He has given us strength through illness...and yet I struggle to find the joy in it, because really, I would have rather had perfect health for my family.
He has shown us the love of His people when we needed love the most...and yet I struggle to find the joy in it, because really, I would have rather been with the people showing His love to someone who needed it.
And so I have found myself at times, reaching deep to find that joy...the joy that is new every morning, the joy found in my weakness, the joy that comes in Jesus.
And on this last night of 2011 and first few minutes of 2012, I have that joy.
I have so many reasons to be joyful. I have 4 wonderful children. I have a husband who loves me. I have a church that believes in it's calling as the body of Christ. I have a family who loves me.
And I have a God who loves me. Who calls me His own. Who holds me like I hold my babies.
So here's to 2012. May you experience joy - the deep, consistent, to the core joy that He provides. May the roads be a little smoother this year. May your focus be on Him who sets the path before you.
Happy New Year!