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4.18.2014

the art of celebration.



it's about time for some honest talk, friends. this video made me cry. like an aching cry. a cry that shouts "amen!" and "Jesus, please come back soon" all at the same time. this week has been a really rough one. it's been one of those weeks where just about everything in my life that gets me down weighed extra heavily on me. it's like one thing happens that triggers everything else. i spent a lot of time at work this week with uncontrollable tears rolling down my face. thank goodness for the privacy of cubicles, right? i spent my days with headphones in listening to some of my new favorite worship music...just trying not to fall apart. it was a week where i was exceedingly aware of how much i needed Jesus every minute of every day to hold me together.

in talking to my best friend about this week i told her, "i love Jesus so much. life is just so hard sometimes." so what do you do when the world wears you down? do you sit there and take the beating? no way, sister. you stand firm and thank the Lord your God for the gifts he has given. the gift to wake up each morning, the gift to glimpse another sunrise, the gift of laughter, the gift of life itself. every single gift. you name it.

you choose joy. 

"seriousness is not a fruit of the spirit, but joy is."

i'm not saying you have to be happy all the time. happiness is not the same thing as joy. joy is a spiritual discipline, and you must choose it over and over. this world will do all that it can to wear you down. fight, brave hearts, with all your might, for joy. no matter what you are facing, there is a Gospel and a King worth celebrating. and guess what? that King celebrates over you as well. you are his, and he cares more deeply for you than you will ever know. i pray that you and i both remember this, and that he would be the song of our hearts and the hope of our souls.  

how fitting that all of this hit me the week of easter. i am a broken being fully known and fully loved by a constant Savior who came to make me whole. Jesus came to save that i may live life and live it to the full. to live a life free of fear, free of sorrow, free of guilt, and free of shame. to live a life of celebration. there is nothing more beautiful than that.

take heart, brave ones, for He has overcome the world.

He is risen.

29 comments:

meg pitts said...

LOVE "Heaven's going to be the greatest party of all time, and we need to get started practicing now!" Such a great video! Thank you for sharing that! And for sharing your heart! So sorry you're hurting, that's so hard! I hope and pray that Jesus' love surrounds you this weekend!

Jenna Secrist said...

Yes, yes, yes! I really, really needed to read this. And again, that John 16:33 verse is spot on!

Robyn Black said...

that video is so, so good! joy really is something we have to intentionally choose - and no matter what we are going through there is always something to be joyful about because He has defeated sin! thank you for this post - your week sounds like the week i had last week. everything just hits at once and it seems so overwhelming. but there is still so much to be joyful about! :) you are a blessing - praying for you friend!

Paige Williams said...

Thank you for this. I really needed it this week as well. I too often let seriousness and feelings of depression take over. But I should be letting joy feel me heart and actions!

Christina Main said...

Amen sister friend. Amen. So sorry to hear about such a tough week for you, but thankful you know where to look to for that comfort that surpasses all understanding.

Samantha@Elah Tree said...

1.) Rend Collective is amazing! 2.) What you said was so beautifully put. So beautiful! I love that you can put your heart into words. 3.) I'm sorry you had a rough week. I have week like that too. Weeks that leave me feeling confused and broken and I'm always amazed how Jesus teaches me in those moments. He takes my brokenness and creates something beautiful.

Amy Hodgdon said...

I love this Meg....such beautiful words, and so well put.
Thanks for sharing your heart.
I am sorry this week has been rough, but I am so glad that your heart can be encouraged by the perfect love of our Savior.
Much love friend,
Amy

bettynz said...

It makes you wonder how people that don't depend on God get through. Great post.

Kristina said...

Wonderful post! The video got me teary eyed too. I hope you'll be able to rest this weekend and find your strength again. God is good, so good! He'll get you trough anything! Happy Easter :)

Megan McIlvaine said...

right? it's the little things that affect us the most, i think. choosing to focus on the little joys definitely helps.

Megan McIlvaine said...

thanks, girl :) it was a very restful weekend. hope you had a beautiful Easter!

Megan McIlvaine said...

i know i sure wouldn't! Jesus is my rock.

Megan McIlvaine said...

thank you, amy! and yes, i am so grateful for that. i love that Jesus comes along side us and is with us every step of the way. :)

Megan McIlvaine said...

1. ahhhhh i love them! seriously. they are one happy party.
2. thank you, friend :)
3. right? i think i get to points sometimes where i don't rely on Jesus as much as i should and he lets me feel the affects of that and gently reminds me that i need him every single day. he makes all things new and beautiful and i am so grateful for it.

Megan McIlvaine said...

yes! and i'm so thankful i have Jesus to look to. i would be lost without him!

Megan McIlvaine said...

so glad you were encouraged through this, friend. let joy fill you up!

Megan McIlvaine said...

i've watched it so many times this weekend. haha! i love it. and amen, there is ALWAYS something to be joyful about...we just have to choose to remember those things. thank you for your prayers, lady!

Megan McIlvaine said...

thank you, jenna! i think we all have those days and weeks and months sometimes. so glad that we can come alongside one another to encourage, and i'm so grateful for Jesus and his promises. hoping you feel Jesus' presence daily this week! xoxo

Elizabeth Mayberry said...

amen.

Rachel Cox said...

Love this. So happy to have stumbled upon your blog last night. I am so grateful for the godly, Christ fearing women I have met in the blog world, and was super pumped to see you in the jack of all trades link up this morning. The Lord is good, always, even in the midst of the bittersweet moments. Believing that he is good when I am struggling is hard, but so wonderful to see him stretch my trust in him more. Much Love!

Megan McIlvaine said...

love you.

Megan McIlvaine said...

rachel! so glad to have you stop by :) and amen! thank you for the encouragement!

Chantel Klassen said...

Um, WOW! "Seriousness is not a fruit of the spirit but joy is" I can't really even begin to describe what I'm thinking now, other than celebration has been on my mind lately. I live (and grew up) in a serious community and I want to learn to celebrate!

Megan McIlvaine said...

right? that phrase rocked my world. it's one i keep reminding myself of this week. :)

Aimee said...

This post! I love how God finds ways of telling you just what you need to hear, just when you need to hear it. Thank you for letting Him use you as His messenger! Judging from the comments, I wasn't the only one who needed the reminder!

Amy said...

literally, the only thing i can come up in response to this: amen.
and secondly, praise God we don't have to face this alone. (*also tears at this moment. tears*)

Megan McIlvaine said...

Isn't it funny how it always works out that way? Jesus knows what I need to hear and when I need to hear it :)

Megan McIlvaine said...

i still get teary-eyed watching this video. it's so honest and true and beautiful.
hugs, friend. love you!

Angela said...

Choosing joy. Amen! I try and pick out the little joys in each day, it has really changed my outlook on things. :)