Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18


The difference between an event that is cause for celebration and one that leads to sorrow is often very slight. It can be a few inches on the distance that a ball travels through the air, it might be a few votes in an election, a decision made or rejected, or a route chosen for the drive home. The distinctive in how we handle all of these events, whether we are on the joy or on the pain side of the result, is found in our view of life and the vantage point from which we look at it.


To me, it seems utterly irrational to experience a defeat, a negative life-changing event, or a deeply personal loss and shout for joy when it happens. Yet, God says that I should trust Him in this matter. However, unlike many well-meaning people who try to minimize the hurt and the devastating sense of loss that can come, God understands how I feel, and He helps me see that He has experienced all of the same emotions as I am going through. The Spirit of Christ helps me to grasp the fact that it is normal, rational, and expected to feel deeply. Even in the hardest of times and situations He shows me that there is hope, purpose, and healing for everything that occurs in this life. This is true for all of life’s events from the smallest of disappointments to the greatest loss.


God wants me to see that I am not rejoicing in the outcome of the event itself, I am rejoicing in Him. As I position myself so that I am continually close and intimately engaged with my Lord through the process of talking with Him, opening my deepest thoughts and feelings to Him, and studying His word with the sort of receptiveness that allows His Spirit to speak to my heart and mind from deep inside the pages, God shows me His perspective on life. He leads me to the place where I can see more clearly. He takes me to that high vantage point where the soothing breeze of His Spirit’s presence has dried my tears. Now, my heart is set free from the oppression of loss, and my mind is given the clarity that I need to move forward in Christ’s victory