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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Be Joyful! Be Prayerful! Be Thankful!

On Wednesday, we were issued a 48 hour challenge over at Melissa Taylor's Online Bible Studies surrounding this verse:

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18~ Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus. (NLT).

She asked us to be intentional on being joyful, praying a lot (even when you don't feel like it), and remember to be thankful (regardless of our circumstances).

I am about ten hours into this challenge and I already see an amazing difference in my day. Did my circumstances change? NO. Only my response did. This has been a long, weary couple of weeks in our house. Illness of myself and 2 of the 4 children, another child in the ER, and just battles in general. I was so weary. A good friend noted and messaged that she felt I was 'down in spirit'. Right on! I have been seeking God lately on some big issues, and feel like I am in a tug of war. Flesh vs. Spirit. Some things I feel He has told me to do. To step out of my comfort zone. To remember some things from a few years back and prayerfully consider. I have been like a disobedient child. I have been feeling a lot like Moses and Jeremiah both. "Lord, not me. Send someone else. I don't know what to say or do.", or as Jeremiah, "I am too young." (spiritually speaking here). "I don't have the credentials."

Today, I purposed to look up instead of looking around. I chose to look at the One who controls the storm, rather than looking at the storm. When I first started my walk with Christ, I almost worried I talked His head off. I spoke to Him all day. I listened too. I sang and praised Him. He was my best friend. Lately, I have been too busy looking around and not looking up.

Today, I spoke with Him many times. I thanked Him for even the little things. I thanked Him just to say thank you. I had a song in my heart. And joy came! I began looking at the sky differently (like I did in the beginning). Everything was beautiful-it was like someone had traded my dirty glasses for a shiny pair. Perspective came. Little blessings came that I didn't expect nor ask for.

Today should have been hard. We were awaiting test results and an email from my son's neurologist. Did they come? No. The office was closed. Did I panic? No. The peace that passes all understanding was upon me. The same peace that was with me those many years ago when my son first got sick. JOY was here. Something I haven't experienced for a while. Perspective came. Even though I feel what He is slowly revealing to me to do will totally take me out of my comfort zone, I choose today to thank Him that He never gave up on me. That He died a criminal's death, cursed on a tree for me. That it is IN Him and THROUGH Him, I exist. That I owe my very existence to Him. Today, I choose to be more thankful and aware of His presence.

Galatians 2:20- I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. (NKJV)

Psalms 30:5 (b)~ Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning. (NKJV)

Philippinas 4:6-7~ Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (NKJV)

I LOVE this song!!

I pray that our Lord Jesus blesses you with His peace and His joy today and always!

Jennifer Newsom,
OBS Leadership Team


  1. Praying for you, Jennifer! So glad I've got the chance to get to know you. <3

  2. Thank you for sharing a piece of your life with us, so that we may learn and grow. I am so glad your are wearing shiny glasses now;) Great post girlie!

    Amanda G
    OBS leader

  3. Look up and not look around! Great way to keep the joy. Prayers for your son and peace for you while you wait. Thankful for you!


    1. Thank you Mary and I am thankful for you too!

  4. Love it Jennifer. Been lifting you up sister. I have been where you are these past weeks losing Mom and friends, but our God is greater and He is bringing me peace. I woke up thinking about her this morning at 3 and decided to blog and then school called and needed me 4 hours and I almost said no but those kids bless me. Your blog is as beautiful today as your heart always is to us ladies. Love you. Debbie Williams (OBS Small Group Leader)

    1. Thank you so much Debbie and I can't wait to read yours. Today got crazy around here. Your prayers always mean so much to me. Love you!