That's Mine and You Can't Have it.

Scenario 1:

I'm driving into the Target parking lot, only a mere hour before I need to be at work. I get out of my car. While getting out, someone says to me, "You know your tire is flat, right?"

Tons of thoughts are filling my head.

What do I do?

I have to get to work.

Is it safe to drive to the tire place?

I really should learn how to fix a flat . I know, I'll call my dad.

I run into Target and get a can of fix-a-flat {thank you to my dear dad who informed me of this wonderful thing.} I make it to the nearest tire replacement store {which was, thank the Lord, only right down the road}.

They look at my tire. It had almost ruptured. As I hear this, I am thankful I decided NOT to go on the highway that day...and wholeheartedly believe the Lord redeemed me from destruction that day.

I get a new tire.

problem solved. Not a deal.

Scenario 2:

I am leaving the previously mentioned tire store and run an errand for work, which is only right down the road. Everything was taken care of for my job, and I'd make it in good time.  I am getting back in my car and I notice A NAIL IN MY OTHER TIRE.

Once again, all these thoughts are filling my head.

Again?

What about work?

and then I remember saying out loud..."Oh, no devil...you CAN NOT steal my joy. That's mine- and you can't have it. "

Something changed in me as soon as I said that. I realized, I don't really have any place in my life for anything other than unspeakable joy.

I almost let a tire...A black circle of rubber...take my joy away from me that day.

So of course I went back to my friends at Discount Tire...and they were SO thrilled to see me . and everything worked out fine.

What a lesson I learned that day...

Oh wait,

There's more...

The day after I get my tire fixed, I leave for Branson to sing in my friends wedding. Branson is about an 8 1/2 hour drive. Had a good weekend and it was a wonderful wedding. Sunday rolls around and it's time for me to drive back to Fort Worth.

I decide to go down HWY 7 in Arkansas, which is one of the most beautiful drives in America.

I had never gone that way before, but was thankful for my GPS...that is until it took me into the boondocks of Oklahoma.

Here I am and I haven't seen any civilization for about 10 miles... So I'm just driving along this country road and BAM {just in case you were wondering, that's the sound of my car going into a HUGE pothole}

I think, I should probably check my tire.

I all of a sudden see a driveway coming up....so I pull into it and check my tire......

yes....another flat...

Once again I think, man I REALLY need to learn how to change my tire.

Of course this time it's sounding like a better idea than before...considering the first time I had that thought was in a Target parking lot, and this thought came to me while  I was on a country road in middle of nowhere, Oklahoma.

I call my dad...again.

He can't really give me the advice to "buy a can of fix-a-flat".

Long story short...By what I believe to be nothing else than Divine Intervention, I realized I had actually driven into the driveway of a Ranch.

What is so amazing about this is that before I got the flat, I hadn't seen ANYTHING for about 10 miles...and when I drove off, I saw no other houses or farms for about 13 miles.

Wow.

So, it happened to be that 2 people were there feeding the horses . They saw me and  helped me change the tire. changed the tire for me.

There are many more details to this story that make it amazing {and interesting; I drove all the way from Oklahoma to Texas going 45 miles an hour because of the spare}

But even in the midst of all of that...I put myself in rememberance of the joy that NO man, NO circumstance could ever take away.

I learned such a valuable lesson. Even though a flat tire is a pretty menial hardship, I applied it to situations and storms in life that could ever come up.

Even the biggest problem, situation or circumstance we ever go through, the joy of knowing what Jesus did for us and what we are redeemed from, is far bigger.

Whenever you are in a bind, or even in the hardest situation of your life, don't let the devil steal what Jesus gave you.

"But I don't have money to pay my bills, and you're saying I should have joy?"

yes. The Joy of Jesus is far greater than that. Also, He promised us He will provide. He is Jehovah Jireh. trust Him.

"But my best friend died...that's the hardest thing I've ever been through. I should STILL have joy?"

yes...now more than ever. It's the Joy of Jesus. It's the JOY in His presence.

that doesn't mean you can't cry, be sad, or miss them. That's normal. But you have a hope that is higher than a worldly hope.

No matter what you go through...

Whenever you go through hard times, NEVER let the devil take away your joy.

If he can't steal your joy, then he can't steal your hope. If he can't steal your hope, then he will never  steal your dream.

John 16:22
So you have sorrow now, but I will see you again; then you will rejoice, and NO ONE can rob you of that joy.

you are loved by me & Jesus.

-j.