I remember a time in my life when I believed I might be “joy immune.” Depression had stolen my joy. I learned through that experience that we sometimes have to fight for joy (and, some days, our fight is harder.) On the days when I have to fight for joy, these are promises that I stand on.
“I want what you have,” she declared as she stared deep into my soul with her searching eyes.
I was a bit taken aback. “Excuse me?” What I really meant was, “What do you mean?”
“You’re always so full of joy. I can see it in your eyes.”
I’ve heard similar sentiments many times over in the last few years, and often it brings me to tears…tears of joy.
You see, I remember a time when depression stole my joy, and I believed that I might even be “joy immune.”
Fighting for Joy
As I wrote in my book, “Hope Prevails: Insights From a Doctor’s Personal Journey Through Depression,” scripture tells us that “The thief comes only to steal, and kill, and destroy” (John 10:10) and when it comes to depression, he seeks to steal our joy, kill our peace, and destroy our identity. It’s a fight!
Some days we have to fight for joy more than others, but it’s always available. Jesus promised, “I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!” (John 15:11)
On the days we have to fight harder for joy, it’s a comfort to remember his promise in Job 8:21 NLT: “He will once again fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy.”
A friend gave me a T-shirt that reads “Fight For Joy.” It means a great deal to me. Not only because it was a gift, but also because wearing it reminds me that despite the circumstances, I must fight for joy. I fight not only for myself but also for others, because as I wrote about in “Hope Prevails,” every day is a fight against the enemy of our soul. And I’m a warrior woman, ready to fight for what Christ died to give me, my family and friends, and YOU!
How are you fighting for joy today? I’d love to hear in the comments below. It just may encourage someone else!
#JoyPrevails #FightForJoy #NotTodaySatan
May I pray for you?
I lift up the one reading these words right now. You know that we have an enemy who seeks to steal our joy. But oh how grateful I am that the second part of that verse reminds us that you have come so that we could have life, and have it to the full. Father, I ask you to help us fight for joy, and to remember that we are not fighting for victory, but from a place of victory because of Christ’s finished work on the cross. I ask for this one right now, that you will comfort and bring your joy in the morning. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Depression doesn’t have to become a permanent part of life.
There is hope.
Hope Prevails: Insights From a Doctor’s Personal Journey Through Depression and the companion Hope Prevails Bible Study help the reader understand how depression comes to be, recover their joy, reclaim their peace, and re-establish their true identity, while knowing their worth, remembering their secure destiny, and being confident that nothing separates them from God’s love.
“Dr. Michelle Bengtson’s enlightening book, Hope Prevails, provides a master blueprint for overcoming negative thoughts and toxic emotions. Targeting a generation who feels lost and hopeless, this book provides meaningful help to everyone who has endured unexpected heartache, pain or trauma. Hope Prevails offers effective answers on how to overcome loss and reach for a life brimming with peace, joy and limitless dreams. Reading this book will drastically improve your life.” ~ Tracey Mitchell TV Host, Preacher, Author, Downside Up