Joy. Something that seems to be hard to find in times like this, but God has been laying this thought of joy on my heart over and over again throughout this quarantine. It seems as though everywhere we look our joy starts to diminish because our fear intensifies; places that used to be packed are now vacant, everyone is keeping a distance between themselves, when we go out everyone wears gloves and masks, we can’t even go visit loved ones for the fear of transmitting this virus. All of this fear of the uncertainty is taking what we are still able to do/have for granted, and I think that God wants to use this time to show us the joy that He provides when our lives seem to be put on hold.
At the beginning of the year nobody could have foreseen this year going like this. Speaking from my perspective, I was so excited to get back up to college and see all of my friends again and get geared up for the baseball season. Then the season ended just like that, we had just finished up a midweek game against Toledo on a Wednesday night. I remember hearing after the game that all fans were suspended, then the next morning the NBA was suspended, then we had a meeting about everything going on and found out our season was suspended until March 30th, and two hours later we got called back in and got the news that our season was cancelled. When everyone received the news that our season had been cancelled it was tough, the room was upset, the coaches, the staff, the players, it almost didn’t feel real.
Amidst all of the chaos, confusion, frustration and heartache, as I reflect back on this time while everything is shut down my life has become more simplistic. I am not constantly on the go from class to training to study hall, my days have slowed down and I have gotten to spend more time in the Word which has been such a blessing and that leads me to where I am at now. Getting to spend more time with God, and experience the joy that He continually provides, even in times of uncertainty. Hear me out, everything that happens fits into a pattern for good, even though we may not be able to see the good right now our God is working.
Sickness is not of God, Revelation 21:4 “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
Our God is perfect, Psalm 18:30 “Everything God does is perfect”
Our God turns destruction into blessings. That is what I believe He will use this time as, a time to call his children back home. Psalm 22:27 “The whole earth will acknowledge the Lord and return to Him. All the families of nations will bow down before Him.”
Our God is a transforming God, who turns water into wine, who turns grief into wonderful joy, who turns the sinners to believers! C’mon somebody if that doesn’t give you joy then I don’t know what will.
The best way to get through times of uncertainty, is to cling to things that are certain, and what do we have in our lives that are certain besides God? And what do we know for certain about God? We know that “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness,
faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.” Galatians 5:22. Knowing this, we know that God is good and we are to hold tightly to what is good, even through the tribulations. Finding joy in times like these are tough, but when we keep our eyes fixed on Jesus we will experience an “abundance of joy” John 16:24, “a joy that no one can you rob of” John 16:22.
During this time of isolation we need to shift our minds from what we don’t have or can’t do anymore and shift our hearts and mind towards thankfulness. When we posture our heart and mind towards a state of thankfulness, it keeps our mind on the positive, a simple way to to finding the light in dark times as such is to focus on the light. To always be grateful, no matter the situation James 1:2-3 “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.” Continue to praise Him, continue to trust in Him, and experience the joy that our God will deliver in times of such uncertainty.
I pray that to whoever reads this that God will bring an overwhelming blanket of joy over you and your loved ones. That in this time we don’t run from God because of our confusion or frustration, but that it actually draws us closer into Him. He makes his joy available to all who call upon him. It says in Psalm 22:26 “All who seek the Lord will praise Him. Their hearts will rejoice with everlasting joy.” I pray that many of us experience this joy, and allow it pour out of us.
Chance Huff, a Niceville, Florida native, is a rising Junior at Vanderbilt University where he plays baseball. A huge fan of The Office and all things food, you can find him enjoying time with friends, family (including brother Christian and sister-in-law, Sadie), and encouraging people toward Jesus.