Experiencing Lasting Joy Each Morning!


The date and time had been set. Our third child would be delivered, as scheduled, the next morning. Back then we didn’t know if it would be our first daughter, or our third son who would join our family. Either way, I knew that “joy would come in the morning”. (Psalm 30:5) As it happened, a third son was born the next morning. The joyful noise that first came out of his mouth that morning, has continued to this day. Overnight, it seemed, a delightful baby became a grown up delightful man.  Later I experienced the same joy when another son and a daughter finally arrived. A number of years ago Russell M. Nelson gave a talk about joy in the morning. Not just the joy that comes with the birth of a child, or the celebration of their birth each year, he spoke of a more lasting type of joy in the morning. A joy that can last for a lifetime. He taught:

“The gospel of Jesus Christ offers hope,…It declares joy to be part of our divine destiny. And to experience joy in the morning becomes our special challenge. The true test,” I continued, “is to be able to look in the mirror, first thing in the morning, and feel real joy. ”One of our daughters, who had recently announced that she was expecting a new addition to the family, said, “But Dad, that’s the hardest time of the day for me!”

“My dear ones,” I replied, “in order to experience true joy in the morning, or at any time, at least three factors are needed. You need to feel good about the people with whom you live and work—your companions in life. You must feel good about yourself—not in any sense of conceit, but simply a proper esteem for yourself, well deserved. And possibly most important, you must feel good about your relation to God and sincerely love him.” (“Joy Cometh in the Morning”, GC, Oct. 1986)

Nelson’s three factors are encompassed in the popular scripture that we all know,

“Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.(Matt. 22:37-40)

I might add that not only do all the law and the prophets hang on these two commandments, but also all the “joy” we so desire as we rise each and every morning to face another day. Joy is to be had each day. It is there to be embraced if we open our arms!

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