“Does anyone have any joys or concerns?”
PB asked this question every Sunday morning, and people usually responded with various prayer requests.
“Pray for my grandma who is having surgery this week.”
“Pray for the safety of those traveling during the holidays.”
“Pray for my co-worker who got bad news.”
One Sunday was different, though.
A member raised his hand and said, “My car got a big scratch along the side of it last week while in the church parking lot and it must have been someone here. I think whoever did that should come forward and fix it.”
After that, we called this special time during our worship service
“Joys, Concerns and Accusations.”
I’ve been thinking about that word — joy. Following my Bible Reading Plan, I’m spending the next several weeks looking at scriptures that contain the word joy. I’m only two weeks in, but already I’ve noticed something surprising.
So far, the verses on joy also include words like these:
Joy and sorrow seem to go hand in hand.
We will come rejoicing, bringing in the abundant harvest of sheaves only after we have sown seeds of tears. (Psalm 126:6)
We will experience seasons of painful labor and anguish, but eventually it will give way to the joyful birth of something new. (John 16:21)
Our tears of sorrow are not ignored or overlooked or wasted. They are seeds that sink into dark places but, in time, they will produce a harvest of joy.