Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Philippians 1:2 NRSV
As you begin this daily walk, choose a setting without external distractions. Calm your heart and your mind to allow Scripture to speak to you in whatever way you need to hear. Ella sang the old hymn, “Speak to My Heart,” each morning as she searched for a roadmap from grief to joy and prepared to enter a quiet time of meditation. Pick the way that you can best focus each day.
Start with Scripture. Today, read Philippians 1:1, 2 from your favorite translation of the Bible or from the epigraph printed at the top of the chapter, page 3.
What is the key word or idea you need to hear today? Which word resonates more—grace or peace? Why?
Why are you beginning this journey today? What special need or desire do you have?
Read Chapter 1 of Reclaiming Joy. What parts of Ella’s story, if any, do you identify with?
If your struggle to reclaim joy includes legal and financial issues, such as settling the estate of a loved one, pay special attention to the vignette, Ella’s disastrous conversation with her husband’s bankers, pages 3 and 4. Do you understand what fiduciary obligations are? You or someone close to you may be a fiduciary. Those obligations are described on pages 44.
On page 5, Ella describes being in a fog of grief. At other times she describes sinkholes, a black hole and the empty chair. Others say they were hit by waves of grief. What metaphors and similes best describe your grief, depression, anxiety?
On page 6, Ella described how unprepared she was to take on new responsibilities. Do you feel equipped to meet your current responsibilities? What are your needs?
Chapter 1 concludes with a paragraph that describes both difficult issues within Ella’s family and the importance of family unity. She learned that forgiveness—grace—needed to take place before she and the family could find peace.
What is the lesson that you have learned today?
What can you do now to move toward joy? What do you need to let go of?
What three things are you thankful for today? What moments of joy have you experienced in the last 24 hours? Take time to say, Thank you, God, for…
For an introduction to these 28 meditations leading to Easter, please read The Journey to Easter Joy: Daily Meditations, Letting Scripture Speak
© Ella Wall Prichard, 2019