Weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning. — Psalm 30:5
Joy is rooted in God and His Kingdom, in the surety of His goodness, His love for us. It is immovable. Unshakable. ~ Stasi Eldredge
Friend, you are invited! I can’t tell you how thrilled I am that we are starting soon a brand new Online Bible Study — Unwavering: Living with Defiant Joy — with one my heroes, Stasi Eldredge. Day 1 is May 6th and we’ll continue through mid-June for six whole weeks of learning how to be belligerently hopeful and defiantly joyful!
I don’t know who originally coined the word “brutiful” (both brutal and beautiful), but isn’t that a truthful description of life on Planet Earth? Thank Jesus for the celebrations, and the weddings, and the happy beginnings, and the gorgeous views, and the tearful reunions and homecomings, and the delight of welcoming a new baby into the family… because there’s also stunning loss and difficulty that threaten to take us down so hard we feel we might never get up again. All of us have been hurt. By a parent, a teacher, a spouse, or a friend, by loss, by accident, by abuse, by betrayal, by rejection. This world is broken so if we keep breathing in and out on a daily basis, we’re guaranteed to suffer. It’s life!
It seems almost trite, or ludicrous, or maybe even insulting to talk about joy, doesn’t it? Like how dare we!
And yet, as Christians joy is our birthright. Sit with that for a moment. Joy is our birthright.
Until now you have asked for nothing in My name; ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be made full. — John 16:24
Not just joy, but FULL joy!
I tell you what, many years ago if a well-meaning brother or sister in Christ would have shared this quote with me:
Joy is available no matter what our circumstances. ~ Stasi
I would have felt like punching them square in the snoot because I hadn’t yet digested the fact that Jesus was with me in the suffering… nor that joy was even a possibility in my struggles. You have to first pass through fires to know the reality and the beauty of hope and life on the other side. Now, especially with Defiant Joy in my hands, those quotes are weapons against hopelessness, resignation, cynicism, and bitterness. When you experience Jesus in trauma or heartbreak, the shocking response is actually audacious, ludicrous, defiant joy and thankfulness! Joy in the midst of wreckage is purely a Jesus thing.
There is a way to joy. The key is walking with our gaze set on Jesus, even when the way is dotted with suffering. ~ Stasi
That’s why I’m so excited about this study! Because, friend, if you’re there, if you’re hurting, or if someone you love is hurting, you need this. You need joy. The gift of joy.
The joy that Paul discovered, the joy that Jesus knew and invited us into, begins in a deeper experience of God, whatever our situation might be. ~ Stasi
Won’t you join us as we study Stasi’s beautiful lessons she learned the hard way, having endured loss, upon loss, upon loss. Spoiler alert: it’s all about Jesus. Come join us as we seek Him and find unshakable, immutable, unwavering joy!
Joy is the heartbeat of Heaven. ~ Stasi
This study is for you if:
• You want a deeper relationship with Jesus even through seasons of struggle and pain
• You want to walk empathetically with a friend who is suffering
• You need a fresh awakening of the joy Jesus came to give you
• You are a fan of Stasi (or her bestselling book, Captivating… Psst, this one is just as good!)
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Are you in? We want to hear from you! Who’s joining us for the study? Leave a comment!