If you were to ask me to sum up my time in Mozambique, I would tell you that it was ‘filled with joy!’  Every time my mind wanders back to the people there, I feel joy.  Every time I see another picture, I see joy.  When I tell some of my favorite stories, joy is overflowing.  There wasn’t an abundance of food, clothes, or beds in Mozambique, but there was an abundance of joy, life, and Jesus.

I want to return to Mozambique for many reasons, but especially because of the joy there.  It’s one of the things I miss the most.  As I’ve come back to normality here, I’ve had a difficult time trying to find that same joy.  I know that Jesus is here and present just as much as He is in Mozambique; but I don’t always see it.  I know that the same amount of joy is being offered to me daily, but I have forgotten how to receive it.

I was explaining this to a friend the other day, and she reminded me that one of the huge keys is to be thankful.  When I start to be thankful for everything around me, I will begin to feel more joy.  Being thankful helps me to be content in all circumstances.  Being thankful reminds me of who God is and what He is doing.  When I’m thankful for so many things, I’m brought back to praising my Heavenly Father.  I can focus more on Him and less on me.  And that is where my joy comes from!

 

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