Sunday, February 28, 2010

Anticipatory Joy

anticipate: (verb) to expect; look forward to; be sure of

I was sitting in my car at a stoplight today when it hit me: I am not happy.  I don't feel joy right now.  Sure, I can laugh at things that are funny and still crack sarcastic jokes, but the actual feeling of JOY is just absent right now.  I feel sadness, loss, grief, loneliness...but not joy.  Depressing, huh?  At first, sitting at that stoplight today, that's what I thought.  But, I realized that while I don't feel joy right now, I do feel what I like to call "anticipatory joy". 

Isaac used to tell me the one thing he actually liked about being in pain, was the way it felt when the pain was finally gone.  (I imagine he's feeling amazing right now!)  So now, here I am - feeling the pain of grief...but anticipating the joy that will come when that pain is finally numbed a little.  The joy that will follow when I get through this grief.  Psalm 30:5b says "...weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning."  I am holding tight to that promise right now.

I remember the days before Isaac and I got married, and I was counting down the days to the wedding.  I loved driving with my windows down blaring "The Best Thing" by Relient K and just feeling so overflowing with joy.  I know I'll get there again.  I know it won't be easy.  I know I have an awesome God, loving family, and amazing friends to help me.  I know there will be a day where I am driving, windows down, radio blaring, and feeling joyful.  But for now, I'm letting myself be sad, cry when it hits me, curl up on my couch and wallow when I need to, and trying to move forward the best I know how. 


  1. That joy will come. As cliche as it sounds, it just takes time. You will get to the point where you can cry laughing about something he did and realize you are not sad that he's gone, you are happy you got to know him and experience life with him. I wish you all the best and if you need anything let me know.

  2. I'm so with you. Saturday night as I was getting ready for bed, reflecting on hanging out with you, and Isaac's memorial, all I could think was, things can only get better now. Maybe it's just wishful thinking, but I feel like God's going to be doing some incredibly awesome, joy-bringing things in the lives of those hurting right now.

  3. The pain and the mourning will come and go. The missing will be there forever. But life has so much Joy in it. There are days when I just start to cry thinking about how much I miss Melina. There are other days when I think of her and laugh. I am glad you are allowing yourself to feel whatever you feel, and that you know the Joy cometh in the morning. Isaac will be with you forever, and he is waiting for you in Heaven. Until then, look for joy in life. It is everywhere.

  4. I just saw your post on the LPM blog. I am so sorry for your loss. I can't imagine the sharp of your pain. But yes, "joy cometh." Mourning may endure for the night.... but joy still comes!!! I'll be praying for you. I know that God will bring beauty from your ashes, that He'll make all these things WORK for good.... just as He's promised to all those who love Him.

    May God bless you royally in the study that HE wants to speak to you in!


    An aching heart is but a steppingstone
    To greater joy than you've ever known,
    For things that cause the heart to ache
    Until you think that it must break,
    Become the strength by which we climb
    To higher heights that are sublime,
    And feel the radiance of God's smiles
    When we have soared above life's trials.

    So when you're overwhelmed with fears
    And all your hopes are drenched in tears,
    Think not that life has been unfair
    And given you too much to bear.

    For God has chosen you because,
    With all your weaknesses and flaws,
    He feels that you are worthy of
    The greatness of His wondrous love.

    So welcome every stumbling block
    And every thorn and jagged rock;
    For each one is a steppingstone
    To God, who wants you for His own.

    For discipline in daily duty
    Will shape your life for deeper beauty;
    And as you grow in strength and grace,
    The clearer you can see God's face;
    And on the steppingstones of strife,
    You reach at last eternal life.

    ~ Helen Steiner Rice ~


  6. Oh, do I know this feeling! I lost my husband to a car accident almost 2 years into our marriage. I felt the same way, like I was just waiting for something. I always prayed for God to fill this hole in my heart with more of Him, nothing else.

  7. I am just a fellow siesta from over at Mama Beth MOore who read your post today. I just want you to know that i am praying for you today.

  8. Another Siesta with a heart broken for you! Whispering prayers of comfort, peace, and healing. As MommyReavis said, may the Lord gradually fill the hole in your heart with more of Him - not to replace your Husband and your memories with him, but to replace the sadness with joy and loss with Eternal gain. Hugs to you, Siesta! Thank you for your testimony!

  9. Dear Sweet Sister in Christ,
    I have not read your blog in a several days and did not know that Isaac has left is hurting body and now with Jesus.
    I am without words, but know that I am praying for a comfort that only God can provide.
    There will be a day when you can breath again... A time when, although you will still cry when missing your first love, that you will feel like "I'm going to make it." There will be a day, a long time from now, that you will feel joy will smile, you will love, and you will feel happiness again. Be easy on yourself. Shake your fist at God if you need to...He can take it. He is working to heal your heart now even though it feels like it may never be well again.
    Hugs to you sister,

  10. Jess,

    I saw your post on the LPM website. Know I will be praying that He will sustain you in this time of grief. Praying that He will give what He promises in Isaiah 61... "A crown of beauty for ashes, oil of gladness instead of mourning," somehow, a garment of praise.

    On my knees,