***originally written on Dec. 12, 2018. published on Jan. 22, 2019.

2 “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, 
whenever you face trials of many kinds, 
3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.”
— James 1:2-3

I’ve been able to experience something different. I feel joy and the happiness and the warmth of this wonderful emotion. Enduring seasons of depression and loss throughout my life, joy is never something I have taken for granted. I find joy in the little things. There is so much joy in my ordinary life, amidst the mess and the struggles.
I love experiencing real, raw emotion, and tears of joy. Happy crying is so, so good. I have so much joy and thankfully, I know this will be a new season where I get to share it with others. I feel so much more alive, vibrant, and ready to tackle my next step towards conquering the world. Time has passed, life has gotten better. The sun is shining.
I can talk about what happened and the root of my insomnia, the terrible visions in my nightmares—all without crying. It doesn’t wreck my brain and constantly pop up in my thoughts throughout the day. I can breathe. I have peace. I’m not living in survival mode, but I’m thriving. I can’t pinpoint a particular reason on why I’m smiling, but that’s part of the beauty of it all.

God has given me joy and I’m so grateful. He’s given me peace, patience, and cultivated so much fruit in my life while I was in the valley. I survived the storm. In the valley, I always ask God, “Why?,” as if I am entitled to an answer. Despite my lack of faith, God is equipping me for the mountain top, and I am oblivious to the prayers he is answering. The fruit has been harvested and all of the puzzle pieces are finally fitting together. God is Good.

xx, God Bless,

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