Guest Post

Joyful in All Times // Joy in the Mess Series {Guest Post}

Joy in the Mess

Life is almost always a mess. Even if it’s a more positive one, a mess usually needs to be dealt with. I often do not deal with messes well: they can usually signal a change and I really do not like change. A mess can mean uncertainty and interruption and I really do not like when life is uncertain and interrupted.

For a long time, I have lived quite snuggly in my own comfort zone. I had told many people I would never move away from our small (ish) coastal town. I was happy and comfortable in my predictable, uneventful, certain life.

But, it appears God has had other plans. This year has become the year my life gets a messy upheaval. Trusting God really was opening a door for me, I made the decision that would take me away from my comfort zone, provide enough uncertainties to set off panic attacks, and say good-bye to a predictable routine. I had decided to commit to travel overseas for 6 months. The idea is exciting. But the process is messy. For myself, a melancholy, joy is not a natural reaction for me especially in messes.

Two months ago my house was a complete and utter mess. I watched on as box after box was filled up and taped shut. Each box was weighed and carefully manoeuvred over to the lounge room corner where our DVD shelves once sat. Nothing was normal about our house anymore, and nothing was normal about our lives.

Except mess….

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TaKenya’s Story // Joy in the Mess Series {Guest Post}

Joy in the Mess

Welcome back to the Joy in the Mess series! Being able to share the stories from some incredible women about finding God and joy in life’s messes has truly been inspirational. Today, I am happy to share TaKenya’s story. To check out the previous posts, check them out here.


I’ll never forget that morning. August 24, 2014 it was just after 3 am. My phone rang. The phone that was normally powered off when I hit the sack.

If either of us were to leave our phone on over night it would be my husband. His grandparents are older and he worries that someone may call and not get him. Bu this night he powered off.

I looked at the phone and answered it, and she said “baby where’s your husband?” Half sleep I handed over the phone.

It was his mother and even though I rolled over I remained slightly awake. With my back turned I felt his body go limp and he let out a loud but muffled grunt.

I knew it wasn’t good.
He remained composed and said “ok, ok here I come ” and hung up.

As he fell into my arms that were now waiting open sitting next to him, he cried. I’d only seen that less than a hand full of times in my 21 years of knowing him.

He blurted out, “Marty’s gone”….

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When Our Messy Milestones Turn into Miracles // Joy in the Mess Series {Guest Post}

Joy in the Mess

I am so happy to share Trice’s story with you all today as part of my Joy in the Mess guest post series! God does incredible things amid the “messes” of our lives and I love being able to share some of those with you all through these incredible women. Be sure to check out Trice’s blog and social media handles down below!


I remember that day so clearly I looked around and saw all of my peers some were crying, others had huge smiles on their faces and here I was just torn. “Presenting the Class of 2008!!” and just like that high school was over, there was no going back this was it. While most of my classmates were hugging and throwing their caps in the air I was standing there crying. I had a plan, I was going to attend college at Liberty University and major in Nursing and then become a neonatal intensive care nurse at our local hospital. My plan was solid, I had the support of my family and friends and all I had to do was pass my classes and get my degree. I met my parents after the graduation ceremony and we took the usual graduation photos and went over dinner plans for later that day.
I remember my father asking to drive me around to my car but I just wanted to walk of course my Aunt insisted that I ride with her to the next parking lot. As soon as we reached my car I jumped out and got into my car, as I started driving away a wave of depression washed over me. I was slowly learning that no matter how solid my plan was for my future I wasn’t ready for this part of my life to end. I had been battling depression for a few months leading up to graduation but I figured that it was me just stressing over my next step in life.
Summer came and went and before I knew it my father was moving me into my dorm on campus and although we lived ten minutes away from campus I insisted that I lived on campus. After we got my room set up my father hugged me and prayed over me. Depression always had a way of sneaking back into my life at the most inopportune times, here I was at the school I wanted to attend majoring in Business and I still wasn’t happy. I wasn’t comfortable with the intense nursing program at the school and fear caused me to take the easy way out. My father always wanted a business major in the family and I was going to be the one to get that degree. Fear and depression ate away at my spirit bit by bit and by the spring semester I was not only failing out of college but I had once again changed my major back to Nursing. I honestly didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life, I knew for sure that I wasn’t happy and I wasn’t able to articulate what I was feeling on the inside. After many conversations with my father we decided it was best that I leave Liberty University and attend the community college.
The summer of 2009 was very tense, my depression was getting worse and my father couldn’t understand how I could almost fail out of college considering that I always had good grades in high school. On the inside I knew I wasn’t applying myself to my studies like I should but I wasn’t content with studying business or nursing. I knew that I had to attend college and that I had to figure something out soon. In the midst of the darkest season of my life God brought a shining light into my life. I started volunteering at my churches summer camp and I fell in love with those kids. Something amazing happened when I started working with the kids, life started to become brighter. But now here I am considering changing my major once again and ultimately taking a huge pay cut in my future job opportunities.
My family was very supportive during this time in my life they understood that I needed to figure things out and that it was going to take time. The fall of 2009 I began attending our local community college and school became easy for me, I was able to meet some amazing people and I fell in love with teaching.
In 2013 I graduated with a degree in Early Childhood Education and a 4.0 GPA with honors! Looking back on my college experience I still feel the shame and guilt of not graduating on time but I understand that God had to work on me. I had to learn how to manage my depression and ultimately I had to learn to trust in God and know that his timing was perfect. What I considered a messy milestone turned out to be one of the greatest miracles in my life.
I am truly thankful for my experience and I am no longer ashamed of what I went through.

Meet Trice:

Joy in the Mess Trice’s Blog // Instagram // Personal Instagram

Miranda’s Story // Joy in the Mess {Guest Post}

Joy in the Mess

Today I am excited to share Miranda’s story with you all as part of the Joy in the Mess Guest Post series!


When the unexpected happens, how do you react? Do you throw an adult version of a temper tantrum, which can include all sorts of reactions?

I know my share of pain. I have a husband in prison for a crime he didn’t commit, who left behind our two young kids. My kids have been taken away from me, I got them back. I have body issues since I have been overweight for most of my adult life. I have been through a lot of pain in my life.

I have recently been told that I act like I am mad at the world. Ouch, as much as it pains me to say, it is true. Have I lost my joy? I firmly believe that God has a purpose for this trial and that He is going to get us through,  but one some days it is hard to find joy when your heart is breaking constantly for my kids who are growing up without their father. He also was the primary caregiver of the family while I stayed at home with the kids, so we have depend on our families to take care of us.

I have to remember that my strength comes from the Lord and that He is going to take care of us. I need to remember to take time each morning and give Him thanks for all of my blessings.

Without giving thanks to the Lord, how can we truly be thankful. Just being here to read this post is reason enough to be thankful. I once heard that a way to be thankful is to write out your blessings on a page and read over them each morning as a prayer to start you day. What a beautiful way to start your day!!

We must always be in constant praise of the Lord for all that He has done for us. If you can’t find a reason to be thankful for, start looking small. For me although I don’t have a house to call my own (we live with my parents), I am so thankful that my kids and I have bed to sleep on each night. We have food everyday and don’t go hungry. We have our health. We have people to help and support us daily.

If we are not in constant praise, our lives will start to get stale and our faith will become stagnant. This is what I believe I have let happen in my faith over the past couple of weeks. Just because I am upset over my circumstances, doesn’t mean I did to be mad. I need to find joy in the little things and always be in constant praise of the Lord.


image1About Miranda:

I am a Christian wife, mother living in Texas going through a difficult time in life. My goal is to help others going through trials and helping them overcome it and realize that the Lord is in complete control. You can connect with her on her blog at

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