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  • Writer's pictureVickie Turley

Choosing Joy!

I was sick for a long time! About 20 years ago, after I had my gall bladder removed, I started having some new digestive problems. I would be nauseated all the time, I would have pain and bloating, sometimes before I even ate. For years, I went to different doctors, had all sorts of tests and was told so many different things. It was IBS so deal with it, nothing showed on scans so come back in 3 weeks if not better, it's all in my head and I should see a therapist.


As the years went on, it got worse and worse, to the point where I could barely eat. About 10 years ago, I was referred to a specialist in Louisville, Kentucky, who finally told me I wasn't crazy, who told me he understood the pain I was in, and gave me a diagnosis of chronic pancreatitis. I began another journey of tests and procedures to try and fix the problem, culminating in a huge surgery to totally remove my pancreas.


I will share more of this journey in future posts, But for today, let's talk about the power of joy in little bites!


As my time being sick for longer and longer, I changed! I lost my joy! I lost interest in even the sweetest moments. I stayed in bed and I rarely got up! I chose not to see any beauty - no butterflies, no flowers, no music, no sweet smiles of my grandchildren. You see, I let Satan fool me with his lies into thinking I was worthless and had no place on this earth. It was the darkest time of my life! I truly lost the will to live - but even there, in the dark, God whispered to me that He wasn't done!


After my surgery in 2019, I was pain free the moment I woke up from the anesthesia. My heart leapt in my chest and I knew I was going to join the world again. I could eat again. I could begin attending some family functions. I could play with my grandkids.


That was five years ago and I've realized a lot of things about that dark time. I know that God was with me and He kept me alive. I realized that even though I thought I was doing all I could to be well, I wasn't! I made choices - choices not to lean on God, choices not to let my family support me. I chose to believe Satan and that led to darkness!


I don't know your struggles today. But I do know that God is in our every moment. He is with us, He is a part of us, and He desires to have a true relationship with us. That takes times and it takes energy - maybe more energy than you have right now. So what I've learned is:

  • Choose not to believe the enemy's lies. He is strongest when you are at your weakest. Keep looking to the One who wants good for you and tell Satan to BE GONE!

  • Start noticing beauty every single day. For you, it may be an amazing song, maybe it's a walk outside, maybe it's just getting out of bed and going to the living room. Let your family support you! Let your friends in and share with them your struggles.

  • Whatever brings you a smile, whatever fills your Heart, do it.

  • Get a journal and write down what you notice - did you see a hummingbird flying around? Is the sun shining bright? Did a woodpecker catch your eye? Did you turn on the radio and hear exactly what you need? Write it down! Then, when you are in a valley again (and you will be), you can be reminded of joyous little moments.

I'd love to share a playlist of Christian songs that some ladies from my online Bible study and I put together awhile back. May it remind you, even for just a few minutes, that you are loved! I see You - and I know you can do this! Choose joy today!



Joy in looking at this sweet face
My niece's son!


And by the way - here's my joy from recently. Now that's something to smile about!


Vickie


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