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One Week to Find Joy

Looking For Joy?

Have you ever felt like you were on a hunt for joy? An 18-year-old boy was surprised to find it surrounded by people who had very little. He found it where you’d assume you’d find sadness. He went on a trip unsure of what he would experience but came back with a new perspective on life.
 
When he returned, he reflected and shared, “I’m willing to say I saw more joy in this one week in Kijabe, Kenya than what I’ve seen in America throughout my whole nearly 18 years of life.” 
 
What if I told you that you could find joy, a new perspective, hope and purpose by going on a trip for a week? Would you go?
 

The Trajectory of a Life Changed

High school senior, Nico, joined his classmates and teacher on a team to Kenya earlier this year. When he returned, the trajectory of his life changed. He came back with a different outlook on life simply by saying yes to going on a mission trip. 
 
He had spent 18 years of his life in America and only one week in Kenya, yet this trip had the power to alter his life and perspective. How is this possible? 
 

Moldy Cake

Nico shared his experience during his valedictorian speech amongst peers and their parents soon after he returned from Kenya. “The world tries to tell us to find purpose in happiness and the pursuit of it. However, that’s not God’s purpose for our lives, and we will never find fulfillment in doing it the world’s way.” 

Nico had witnessed the people in Kenya couldn’t find comfort in basic things like an abundance of food, easily accessible clean water, or a warm cozy home. He saw many people who lived in tiny one-room homes with dirt floors, no running water or electricity, and often had nothing but couches and blankets inside. 

“So often what we try to do is first find joy in the world and then put a little bit of God on top like icing on the cake. But let me tell you, the cake of the world hidden underneath is moldy and rotten all the way through. The people of Kijabe understood that we must first find our joy in the Lord and then He will provide for us.” 

“Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and He will give you everything you need.” 
-Matthew 6:33
 
Those in Kenya knew things he hadn’t yet discovered:
  • Their joy came from the Lord, not the world, simply because the world has very little to offer them in their current situation.
  • The things of this world that we have are blessings from God, not the rewards of our works or efforts. We can lose these things just as quickly as we gain them.

Don’t Rob Yourself of Joy

Where do you seek purpose and fulfillment? What is your number one priority in life? Where do you go to find joy and fulfillment? If it isn’t God, then I promise you, you’re only robbing yourself. 

Nico ended his speech by challenging his peers, “As we all go out into the world, I encourage each of you to build a Christ-centered life so that you may find peace that surpasses all understanding, hope that overflows, and unfailing joy that is independent of your circumstances. Happiness is fleeting, but joy is enduring. Choose joy. Seek joy. And find that joy in the God of joy.”
 
You too can find joy. God shows us that joy is where and how we often don’t expect it. Your life can be forever changed if you look for joy in the right places. Are you on a hunt for joy like Nico was?
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Transform a Child's Life Through Sponsorship

Miredita (hello), my name is Ermal

  • location

    Kosovo

  • 13 yrs. old

    02-15-2011

Entered the program: September 2023

Ermal lives with his parents and two younger brothers in a one-room apartment. His parents don’t have stable employment and they often don’t have the money for the rent or utilities. Ermal tries to help the family by doing different jobs in the community. It is common for many children to have to help their families by working and Ermal's mother is afraid that they won’t be able to help him continue with school. Life for this family is very difficult.

Sponsorship Level What's this?

Three $38 sponsorships are needed to cover the complete holistic care of one child. Cover one, two, or three sponsorships.