Today I just want to post a song that feels joyful. So here one is:
Our pastor’s been preaching in Malachi. The passage about divorce reminds me what a horrible, rough place I was in just a few years ago. But God promises to be a Witness for a woman who’s left by the husband of her youth. And God has been so faithful. On top of that, a year ago this week, I had a stroke, and it’s been a rough year, healthwise. But for that, too, God has been faithful.
One of the pastor’s main points was that an antidote for discouragement is to remember who you are: Someone loved by God. And that God is with you.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I fear no evil, for You are with me!
So it’s been an incredibly difficult several years. But right now? All kinds of possibilities are opening up. I’m soon going to be interviewing for not one but two versions of my dream job — Youth Services Manager at a regional library, in two different counties.
I’ve been praying for months about direction. When I came to Virginia, I moved to be near my lifelong friends, figuring I’d stay a couple years while I licked my wounds. Then my son got into the Number One high school in the nation. I got a job as a Librarian as soon as I finished my MLS degree.
Now that my son has graduated, I wondered if I should stay in Virginia. I thought about moving back overseas to another base library, this time on my own steam. I thought about moving to the Pacific northwest, where I have lots of family, and my older son as well. But my church here has become like family.
Then, not one but two Youth Services Manager positions have come open. Both have great things about them. Mind you, I don’t know if I’ll be offered either one, but I’m super excited about the possibilities.
And it makes me think of my favorite verse from Malachi, which I read in church today during the sermon on Malachi:
But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings. And you will go out and leap like calves released from the stall.
— Malachi 4:2
What I love about that verse is from my experience living in Leithoefe, Germany. Here’s a picture of the place we lived (front and center). This picture was taken in the summer, and the cows were one pasture further up the hill, but you get the idea: There were cows directly outside our back windows.
The cows in the picture look staid and boring, and that’s the way they almost always looked. If they moved, it was slowly and leisurely.
But that’s not the complete story. During the winter, the cows are kept in the farmer’s barn down the hill. In mid-Spring, once the pasture won’t be a sea of mud, the farmer puts the cows back into the pasture. One year, we were looking out the window when the cows returned.
I couldn’t believe my eyes. The cows frolicked. They leaped! They danced around that field! Not just the calves, either, but the old, calm, staid mama cows, too. I still wonder if I imagined it, but the sight burned itself on my eyeballs. Those cows were joyful. They were so glad, glad, glad to be out of that barn!
So, I was happy to be reminded of that Malachi verse right now. I’m hoping for a Springtime season in my life for a time.
And I intend to be joyful.