United Church of God

Treasure Digest: Joy Is the Best Choice

You are here

Treasure Digest

Joy Is the Best Choice

Login or Create an Account

With a UCG.org account you will be able to save items to read and study later!

Sign In | Sign Up


Ever get the blues and wonder why you can't quite shake them? Or do you ever think your trials are going to overcome you? As the Bible tells us, we are supposed to "count it all joy" because of the patience we should develop.

What could be hindering our joyful attitudes? I once heard a speaker mention that negative emotions and unrealistic expectations can prevent us from being joyful. Do we think positively or negatively toward the experiences we have in life? Do we have unrealistic expectations of others and ourselves?

One day I had reached my limit with the stress of my job. My boss was practically requiring me to be simultaneously in more places than was humanly possible. I thought about quitting. My friends told me to quit or at least look for something else.

I don't believe in quitting unless it's the only option. So I prayed and poured my heart out to God, letting Him know that He must intervene in a miraculous way. Then, at the end of the week of praying and pleading with God, I left my office as the sun was setting on Friday afternoon. That night I prayed to God, letting Him know how thankful I was for the Sabbath, especially after the challenging week I'd had.

I really enjoyed that particular Sabbath rest, especially since I had been hobbling around on my crutches, due to an injured knee. My friends at church encouraged me, as I tried to forget the stressful events of the past week.

Sunday morning, I began to dread Monday coming, but prayed again for God to help it be a better week. A neighbor's mom died that morning. Then, shortly before dinner I received a call from my boss. "We've restructured the company and eliminated your position. Please come pick up your personal belongings at the end of the work day tomorrow."

"OK, I understand, business is business," I replied, hanging up the phone. I took a deep breath, letting it out slowly. I closed my eyes and thanked God for the release from the stress of that job. I was blessed to qualify for weekly unemployment checks while searching for a new job. Also, I had extra time to fix a meal to take to the grieving neighbor's family and attend the funeral to comfort them in their loss.

It's almost a year later; I still don't have a permanent job. At one point, I felt very overwhelmed and defeated by this jobless circumstance.

However, God helped me see the positive aspects of this situation. I've been blessed with plenty of temporary assignments to keep me busy. Most of all, I'm thankful for the extra time I have to spend with my family. I'm enjoying the visits with my young nephews (8 months and 31⁄2 years old) the most. I'm so glad for this so-called "trial," because so much good has come of it.

So, I'd recommend to anyone to choose a joyful approach to life's experiences. Joy is the best choice!