Defiance: How to Fight for Joy

Today I almost cried as I read a book aloud to my kids. The scene wasn’t poignant. No one lay dying nor was anyone confessing unrequited love. Still the darkness pressed in around my heart. The heaviness of life, friends fighting cancer, the ton of feathers falling on my shoulders, and my ongoing battle to get my foot healthy again.

They are acts of defiance. The thought came to me as I looked at the horn, streamers, and stickers on my knee scooter.

Defiance against the blues – against the sadness that makes getting out of bed harder than it should be. They are weapons in the war for joy. The battle that rages each waking moment. It is a war I cannot afford to lose because my kids need to know how to fight it. How can they know unless I teach them?

“You have such a good attitude about your injury.” I’ve heard the words and every time they feel like lies.

“Well,” I bravely reply. “I could complain and make things even more difficult for me and those around me…”

And though my words ring with truth some days they feel hollow.

My good attitude isn’t something I was born with or lucky to have. It is something I fight for. It is my battle cry to keep from falling into the dark deep abyss of self-pity and sadness. It is my cry against injustice and evil in this world.

The streamers, stickers, and horn on my scooter are visual reminders to keep up the good fight. They are acts of defiance against the tears and frustration. They help me find joy and laughter in the ridiculousness of life. Soon I remember I have a hope and a joy that goes beyond a healthy foot. They are reminders that God uses broken people and broken places in our lives to bring His glory. And so I must not allow my mind to wander, but I must think on:

“…whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8 ESV

These crazy reminders are not bold declarations of strength. No, they are reminders that in so many ways I am weak, but God is strong. They remind me to put my hope and trust in God alone – for He will fight for me.

Are you fighting for joy? You are not alone. Let’s battle together.

How are you fighting for joy today?