For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for life; Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning. Psalm 30:5
When we were expecting our third child, we were struggling to come up with the perfect name. This was before the time of ultra sounds, so we didn’t know the gender. A girl’s first name was easy, Lara. Even her young brothers liked it. What middle name should we choose, though? One evening, the Lord directed me to Psalm 30:5. “Joy comes in the morning.” Joy – perfect! It was settled instantly. We never discussed a boy’s name. And two months later, our Lara Joy was born, not in the morning but early afternoon. She was a delight and joy from birth, one of those easy children who obeyed before you told her what to do. As soon as she could talk, she would ask what she could do to help in the kitchen or to dust the furniture. Every teacher’s report said Lara Joy certainly lived up to her name. She was a joy in the classroom. Life was good. We always focused on the last part of “her” verse. Then, the “weeping” part of the verse entered our lives. At 13, she was diagnosed with cancer in her knee. During the multiples tests for her knee, the doctors discovered a serious stress fracture in her elbow. She was a competitive gymnast and ended up on the sidelines for over a year. But God healed her, and we were thankful.
What impressed me about our daughter was her attitude during that year. She joyfully accepted whatever God had for her, even a serious disease. She went to the gym every day for practice (when she wasn’t at the doctor’s office or recovering from surgery) and did exercises that did not impact her knee or elbow to remain as strong and flexible as possible while we waited. She cheered for her team from the bench without complaining when we knew she would prefer competing. She never lost her joy during the struggles. (I did. I struggled and wept big time with my baby girl’s trials.) Eventually, she did return to competition and did very well even though we all endured several more times of weeping due to injuries. But she never lost her joy. My teenage daughter taught me much and still does as a wife and mother.
Are you experiencing a season of weeping? Are you blaming God for your problems? Are you angry because you don’t deserve this? What if God has allowed your trials to make you stronger? What if your trials will last for a night, even a long night? What if God promises you that your joy will come in the morning? What if God says you don’t have to lose your joy during your trials while you wait for morning? I know without a doubt that is possible, because I watched my daughter live that as a young teenager. What if God is waiting for you to surrender to Him so you will live a life of joy no matter what your circumstances?