Choosing Joy Even When …

Count It All Joy?

Mr. 4-Ever and I had been in the car for five minutes of a twelve-hour trip when a car pulled into our path and Dave swerved to save our lives. Unfortunately, I was drinking a large bottle of Frappuccino when he made his heroic maneuver, and I spilled half the cold, sticky, sugary drink down my front. It splashed into my hair, dripped off my necklace, and soaked my top down to my bra!

Count it all joy?

Earlier that week, on a trip to Florida, I felt something hard in a mouthful of pudding. When my tongue kicked the hard thing out, it was the crown from my front tooth! I was 1,700 miles from my dentist with a scheduled speaking event the next day. 

Count it all joy? 

The same week, an email from the publisher started with, “I’m sorry to tell you that the truck carrying five thousand of your The Widow Wore Pink books to the distribution center caught on fire and all of them burned.” 

Count it all joy? 

Girlfriend! Do you have days, weeks, or seasons like this? What would you do if you lost a tooth, had a fire, and experienced a wardrobe malfunction all in the same week? 

Stuff happens. And when it does, God’s Word says to count it all joy. But how? How do you count it all joy when what you really want to do is pitch a hissy?

Be thankful!

Either after the hissy fit (or preferably before), be thankful. As it says in 1 Thessalonians 5:18, “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

Find what is good in the situation and be thankful. For me, I was grateful that my computer wasn’t in my lap to get drenched with Frappuccino goodness; a local dentist I found on Google recemented my fang back in place; and my books can be reprinted thanks to insurance coverage.  

Choose not to grumble or complain.

The damage is done. Grumbling and complaining do nothing to resolve the problem. Now is the time to persevere, regroup, and choose the best course of action to restore or correct the situation.

Ask God for wisdom to proceed. 

Remember, God is on the throne. No one is exempt from bad stuff happening to them, but God is able to redeem, replace, avenge, and reconcile anything and everything, because our God reigns. As our faith grows and we trust God to lead us through, he will mature us to make us more and more like Jesus.

How was your week? Are you counting it all joy? 

Verse for today: Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. —James 1:2–3

Prayer: God, stuff happens, I get it, but I don’t like it. Mature me so I can manage upsets and upheavals by trusting you, asking for wisdom, and persevering with grace. Thank you in advance and in the aftermath of this week. In Jesus’ name, amen. 


  1. Kay Hall on June 12, 2022 at 7:49 am

    Favorite part of my email previewing is finding yours and being inspired.
    Blessings on your day.


    • Robyn Dykstra on June 13, 2022 at 2:13 pm

      Oh Kay, you’re the very best encourager. Thank you Friend.

  2. Summer Lassette Hill on June 12, 2022 at 8:39 am

    Back on Oct. 1st, 2017 we got the devastating news that our youngest daughter Hannah Lassette Ahlers (age 34, married 17yrs and 3 children ages 3, 11 & 14) was murdered at the Las Vegas massacre… Even though I was numb and it didn’t even seem real, not once did I blame GOD or anyone else… Instead I shook my fist at the devil and told him out loud that he has not won this battle and has not and will not rob me of My Joy or My Salvation (this was only a few hours after that HORRIFIC phone call)!!! It’s been almost 4 1/2 years since that HORRIFIC day but because of the Love of JESUS, My 4 Ever Husband Frank, Family, Friends and Our Church Family We stand Victorious in JESUS CHRIST!!! I found out that Day just how Strong My Faith is!!! ?????????? Count it ALLLLL Joy!!!

    • Robyn Dykstra on June 13, 2022 at 2:14 pm

      WOW. Just WOW!
      What a powerful testimony, Summer. First – I am so sorry for your loss. What a terrible thing to happen to your family.
      Secondly, well done – you inspire us all to stand firm and fight back with faith.

  3. Judy Pray on June 12, 2022 at 10:56 am

    Your message was timely. Finding myself grumbling far too much I’ve reatarted my gratitude journal! May He continue to bless you with His wisdom and His joy!

    • Robyn Dykstra on June 13, 2022 at 2:15 pm

      Gratitude journals are so helpful for resetting our perspectives. Thanks for the reminder and brave confession.

  4. Jessi Trierweiler on June 12, 2022 at 2:34 pm

    Jesus Changes our attitudes doesn’t He?! I have things like that, that happen to me and as I have matured in Christ it has been a LOT easier finding the good or the joy in those things. More times than not, I can even laugh about it! Praise the work of the Holy Spirit! Thank you for the reminder!

    • Robyn Dykstra on June 13, 2022 at 2:15 pm

      Praise Him indeed! Thanks for posting Jessi!

  5. Susan Muench on June 12, 2022 at 2:59 pm

    Yes, I choose joy and gratitude. I’m grateful for my daughter who helped me pick up all my freshly cute vegetables and dressing that flew out of my hand and onto the kitchen floor!! She could see that I was at my wits end by this time because I was tired, hungry and in a bit of a rush to sit by the pool before the rain came. After the clean up and freshly cut vegetables I did get to the pool and found joy in it because it never rained! And I got to read my prayer book.

    • Robyn Dykstra on June 13, 2022 at 2:17 pm

      Hi Susan,
      I’d say you got a favorball (unexpected blessing) from the LORD. So glad it turned out well. Could have gone wrong in so many ways. Hallelujah!

  6. Laurie Schaaf on June 12, 2022 at 9:20 pm

    I’ve been trying to find something to be thankful for every day since my husband of 52 years died a few months ago. Tonight it was a surprise visit from my granddaughter with my favorite pizza that she made special just for me. I needed that tonight! Everywhere I look I see blessings amidst the grief. It’s all about what I focus on. Sometimes it’s the minor irritations that cause me frustration and I’m always working on not sweating the small stuff.

    • Robyn Dykstra on June 13, 2022 at 2:18 pm

      Oh Laurie, I’m so sorry to hear your man died. Ugh. I admire your attitude of thankfulness to combat the grief.
      What a sweet family you’ve created. Way to focus on the good.

  7. Sarah on June 13, 2022 at 12:17 pm

    Thank you for your encouragement with your emails. I already know to count everything all joy when things are not going right, but right now I am so fed up with the way things are at work. This toxic environment with the new supervisor is too much and most of the permanent have left and there is only three permanent staff left here and we have been praying and nothing is working for it to be better. This last week is the first time I stated that I hate coming to work and this morning I was very tearful and praying for me to feel different. Please help me to pray that the environment will get better and salvation for my supervisor.

    • Robyn Dykstra on June 13, 2022 at 2:21 pm

      Hi Sarah,
      I do pray in agreement for something to change – the supervisor to get a better offer, for you to get a better offer, for the conditions to improve or for you to be supernaturally able to manage. Jesus – be near. amen.

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