Jocie Brooke here reporting from Hollyhill, Kentucky where you have to make up stories to have something happen in our little town. Well, that’s not always true. There was all that stuff that happened last year. Some of it was good. A lot of it not good at all. I’d tell you all about it but it would take too long. I don’t think you would want to just sit and listen to me talk for hours, but if you want to know what happened, you can read all about it in those Heart of Hollyhill books. Romantic things happened. Scary things happened. At least they were scary to me.
But then there was Dad and Leigh. That was good. And Wes. He’s always funny and good. Me finding Zeb would be on the thanksgiving list. I like it that our church wants to hear about the good things happening. I like that the members smile and Dad says Christians are supposed to be happy. Through whatever happens. That can be a little harder. I haven’t figured out a way to be happy when somebody’s mean to me at school. I can pretend it doesn’t bother me. I’m good at that kind of pretending, but no way can I actually be happy about hateful remarks. Or even about not doing as good on a test as I wanted. And I really hate it when a teacher doesn’t give me a good grade on some paper I’ve written. I feel like telling that teacher she doesn’t know a thing about writing. Don’t worry. I know better than to do that. I stew in silence. But happy? Smiles aren’t bursting out all over.
When I talked to Dad about that, he laughed. Guess he has an easier time being happy than I do. But then he got serious and told me that being happy with God is different than being happy with everything that happens. The kind of Christian happiness he’s talking about is something deeper. Something down below the irritations of the day or even the sadness brought on by bad things happening. He says bad things do happen to Christians the same as those who don’t believe. That even the Bible says that. Something about it raining on the just and the unjust. Trouble comes to everybody. But he explained how the Christian has that inner core of joy given to them by the Lord. They know that even at the worst of times, the Lord is there loving them, walking with them through whatever is happening. Dad says sometimes people gather such a dark cloud around them in times of trouble they don’t see the Lord right there beside them, but He’s still there reaching through the cloud with love.
Dad always can explain things the best. That’s why he’s a preacher, I guess. And I am happy inside most all the time. I’ll work on those other times. Isn’t there a song that says, He’s still working on me.
Is He still working on you too? Do you have that joy, joy, joy down in your heart?