There Is Hope in Joy
Life is full of so many ups and downs, and it’s often easy to sink into a sullen state when negative situations suddenly enter into your life—but joy is never actually out of your grasp. In 2013, popular Christian author and speaker Margaret Feinberg received a diagnosis she had never expected: she had breast cancer. But, rather than allow herself to become overcome with discouragement, Feinberg chose to find her strength in God and to walk alongside Him with joy in her journey. In her book Fight Back With Joy, she opens up about the battle she faced and how she was able to use joy as a weapon in her fight against cancer.
Her book provides the reader with insight and entertainment as she uses an appropriate amount of humor, while also giving a tremendous amount of inspiration. “Joy is a far more dynamic, forceful weapon than most of us realize,” Feinberg reminds her readers. “The abiding sense that you are fiercely loved by God? That kind of joy empowers you to rise above any circumstance.” And that includes circumstances where you are quite literally staring death in the face.
Feinberg not only shares anecdotes from her own life but also integrates Biblical references to help further encourage others not to lose hope but, instead, to find joy in whatever situations life hands them. She draws inspiration from Paul, who faced plenty of hardships yet always stood firm in his faith in Christ, and Feinberg reminds her readers that those troubling times are also the perfect moments to rely less on themselves. “Acceptance acknowledges our helplessness and requires us to loosen our grip, slow our pace, and reorient our focus on God in the situation,” she writes. “Paul does not find contentment in bucking his circumstances but in surrendering control of them.”
Fight Back With Joy reminds you that joy can be present anytime—it doesn’t simply have to be in times when everything seems to be going the way you want it to in life. When you do face daunting times—when you find yourself in those moments when you feel like you’re staring at mountains you don’t know how you will ever scale—you can use joy to help you overcome your fears and find thanks in areas of your life you might not have thought possible.
And, as Feinberg found out in her own journey, one way to maintain joy is to give it away—to share that joy with those around you. “Like me, you may not always feel like it,” she writes. “The day you need joy most may be the one you want to offer it the least. Give anyway and give generously. Take the leap.”