HOLDING FIRM TO YOUR JOY
Sunday Morning was just like any other for me, wake up early, get my daughter ready and then figure out what to wear to church and then get ready before heading out. Because I am a morning person, I usually have some music on and take a few minutes in between to dance, this has become a routine because my 5-month-old daughter sits and gives me her toothless smile of validation everytime I break into a dance before throwing kicks as if to mimic what it is I appear to be doing.
Last Sunday was extra for me because I fit into a skirt that I had not touched since 2014, as a matter of fact, the last time I tried to wear it, I needed 2 people to help me zip it up so you know I spent a few extra minutes dancing around in the skirt in excitement, I was fly, I was hot and nothing could stop me.
That was not until I walked into the church and the first person I saw was the usher. She smiled at me and pulled me close as if to say something important, I leaned in thinking she was about to tell how beautiful I looked only to hear her say
'You need to take it easy, you are fat now'.
I had no clue what to say to her, as a matter of fact, I smiled back and kept on walking but her words kept ringing in my subconscious. Here I was coming into the house of the Lord to worship and this person lets the devil use her to mess up my mood.
Even though I have heard worse things, this little statement at what was my 'high' made me forget the progress I had made in the last few months.
Only recently did I realize that this is how the Devil works on us. Whenever we are basking in joy at our little victories or what God has done for us, he comes to remind us of what it is we are yet to achieve or is going wrong and immediately our spirit is broken.
It is a known fact that Nigerians are insensitive in their speech so comments like this isn't surprising at all, what surprised me, however, was the effect it had on me, my excitement was short-lived and I spent the rest of the day and the day after unhappy.
Just being with my little girl has taught me about what my relationship with God should be like. She wakes up with a smile on her face and is excited 90% of the time, she is oblivious to what is happening around her and even if you don't smile at her for whatever reason, she will smile back. You can argue that she is a baby but there has to be a reason why the bible tells us to become like little children so we can inherit the kingdom of God which includes being happy almost all the time.
Life will always throw curve balls at you as you grow older. You have no control over what people say to you or about you, but you have control over how you respond to what is experienced or heard. It takes a conscious effort to be happy even when the enemy throws the unexpected your way.
It is important as God's children to recognize when the enemy is trying to steal your joy because the truth is, no matter how small you think your 'joy' is, the devil will try, and in some cases, you may never realize it until it is too late.
Every day we have to deal with one thing or the other, like crazy drivers on the road, an annoying colleague at work, or even an oversabi person commenting on your weight when they themselves are far from supermodel status. When we face these things remember that it is not them but the enemy trying to steal your joy through them. They don't have to be your haters, sometimes it could be people who genuinely love you but don't know how and when to talk. Whatever the case, stand firm and hold on to your joy.