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Experiencing the Joy of the Lord

On Easter Sunday, I had decided to visit my parent’s Lutheran church. I had been going to another church for a while, but decided to take the time to enjoy Easter Sunday with my parents instead. 

My family and I have always been old school, when it comes to churches. I grew up Lutheran, and was taught the Nicene Creed, Father’s Prayer, and sang old hymns of worship. My parents had been going to this church for about four years now, and I had left after the second year to visit some churches on my own. 

Coming back to a familiar church, I was greeted with faces that I knew once before. Family in Christ that I had enjoyed talking to and sharing how the Lord had been moving in my life. 

Within that congregation, there were about 15 or 20 of us. A smaller congregation than usual that consisted of older ladies and gentlemen dressed nicely for the Easter service ahead. My parents and I sat down waiting patiently for the pastor to start the services.

A couple of weeks prior, I had experienced a car accident that I had never expected to happen right before my last semester of college. The devil had also been challenging before working on my self-confidence and self-esteem.

Yet, as I sat there in the church, I was simply reminded that I needed to experience God’s peace and joy. I was tired. I was mentally drained from my last semester of college. I was needing a break from stress, anxiety, and fear. 

Listening to the pastor’s sermon, I was reminded to experience joy on my worst days and best days. The pastor had shared that experiencing the Lord’s joy was something that C.S Lewis wrote about when he first started to search after Christ. It was a joy that could not be contained. A joy that surpassed C.S Lewis’ understanding. 

I recalled feeling that joy once before after some earlier struggles in my life. I had let God into my life to mend my broken heart, heal, and start stronger with my relationship with Christ. I was thankful that God had restored me and rescued me. Truly, it was a kind of joy that I desired to search after again and again. 

Making connections with my own faith, I shook my head in agreement with the pastor. Regardless of my circumstances, I needed the Lord’s joy in my life on Easter Sunday. I needed a reminder that I should be pursuing God’s love and joy in the good and the bad of life. 

I wanted and needed to experience the Lord’s joy again.

Unfortunately, pursuing joy is hard to do sometimes because I just get mentally drained from the stress, fear, anxiety, shame, and guilt that the devil aims to make me feel each day. The devil works hard, but God works harder to fight my heart, soul, and mind each day I am living and breathing. 

After being in a car wreck and also experiencing a high level of stress with college, I knew that searching for God’s joy could be more of a challenge. I knew, however, that God would be waiting on me and allow me to experience His joy. I just needed to pursue God more. 

Focusing on the joy of the Lord in my life is always going to be a continual challenge that the pastor reminded me of on Easter Sunday. Searching for the Lord’s joy, like C.S Lewis, is something that I plan to challenge myself with on a daily basis.

Experiencing God’s joy may look like just simply dancing in the rain or when all my circumstances look terrible, I smile because I know that I have a God that loves me dearly. It could be simply just listening to some motivational Christian music to get me through the rest of this stressful semester. It could be helping someone who is disabled or struggling as well within their faith. 

Simply put it, there are many ways that I could experience the joy of the Lord. I just need to continue pursuing the Lord.

Now, I reflect already on how good the Lord has been to me. He has died on the cross for my sins, my shame, my guilt, my troubles, and my pain. He took all of my sin away, cleansed me, and renewed me with a right Spirit in Him. 

The Lord also helped me walk away from circumstances in my life that could have been a lot worse. He protected me and provided for me even in the most terrifying moments of my life when I desire to take control. 

Truthfully, on Easter Sunday, I was reminded of how much I can experience God’s love and joy regardless of my circumstances. God is joy, love, and peace, and searching after Him is the ultimate solution.


Pamela K Coyle 1949-2024

Pam received her Master’s degree in library science from Clarion University in 1978. She never lost her love of reading or her enthusiasm for libraries.

Daily Forecast, April 21, 2024

Franklin County Forecast: In the forecast for today, we are expecting overcast clouds, with a high of 52.23°F and a low of 35.2°F. The humidity

Candie Sue Diffenderfer 1963-2024

Candie worked in the Prothonotary’s office at the Fulton County Courthouse, and later at Irving Accounting and U.S.A. Cartage in Williamsport, MD.

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