And this is my prayer, that your love may overflow more and more with knowledge and full insight to help you determine what is best…. Philippians 1:9–10a 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.
Start with Scripture. Today, read Philippians 1:9–11 from your favorite translation of the Bible or from the epigraph printed at the top of the chapter, page 15.
What is the key word or idea you need to hear today from the first half of the text? You will have a time to meditate more on the pure and blameless life later on the journey. Why do you suppose Ella emphasized insight over knowledge? Translations vary. What words does your Bible use?
Read Chapter 3 of Reclaiming Joy. Several important concepts are mentioned: the caregiver’s struggles and guilt, making tough decisions, spiritual mentors, dealing with change, the metaphor of the empty chair. What parts of Ella’s story do you identify with? What can you learn from her?
Ella continually prays a paraphrase of today’s key verse, Lord, give me wisdom and discernment and help me protect the family unit. What is the difference, if any, between wisdom and knowledge, between insight and discernment?
She describes her efforts to determine her priorities and manage her schedule on pages 15 and 16. Are you overwhelmed by conflicting responsibilities and desires? How do you determine your priorities?
On pages 16 and 17 Ella introduces one of her two spiritual mentors. They were role models whose lives reflected the contentment she longed for. She asked them to be her mentors—to meet with her and pray for her on an ongoing basis. Do you know someone who could serve as your guide on your journey to joy?
Do you need to forgive yourself? Do you need to let go of the what if’s and if only’s that replay in your mind? Do you need to give yourself permission to change and do things differently?
What is your greatest need, your greatest longing, your greatest priority or goal in life? Write your prayer to God.
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