I thank my God every time I remember you, constantly praying with joy in every one of my prayers for all of you…. Philippians 1:3, 4 NRSV
Retreat to your quiet place and prepare your heart and mind to allow Scripture to speak to you as you continue on your journey to joy today.
Read Philippians 1:3–8 from your favorite translation of the Bible or from the epigraph printed at the top of the chapter, page 9.
What is the key word or idea you need to hear today? Instead of gratitude, perhaps you simply want to borrow Paul’s term. Who are you thankful for?
Read Chapter 2 of Reclaiming Joy. List all the reasons you are thankful for those special people in your life. Pause and pray with joy for them.
Think about those who are no longer with you. Without them, what do you miss most? What did they contribute to your life that you are most grateful for?
On pages 10–12 Ella describes several sources of encouragement and gratitude after Lev died, ranging from the influence of her friend Betty and her mother-in-law Helen to memories of a favorite childhood book. Where do you find encouragement?
When Ella couldn’t find a book that told her how to live, she looked for people to emulate. Her mother-in-law became her primary, if unlikely, role model for widowhood. Who are your role models?
Pages 11–14 describe Ella’s continuing anxiety about spending major holidays without Lev. Are the holidays or other special days difficult for you? How can you make them better?
On the journey to joy, how do grace and peace contribute to gratitude?
What is the lesson that you have learned today? What can you change to make life better?
Chapter 2 closes with the sentence: We can find joy in our memories and our anticipation of the future. Ella emphasizes the importance of anticipation through Reclaiming Joy. See page 102, C.S. Lewis on components of joy. What are you looking forward to today that brings you joy?
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