Consider it Pure Joy

We joined the United States Army knowing that it was only a matter of time until deployment would be our reality. My kids and I don’t wear the rank, but I’m learning more each day that “we joined” is an accurate statement, as every area of our life is affected by this community of which we are now a part.

After spending five long months apart during the initial training, seeing each other only for a short visit here and there, we were finally reunited. We spent about 2 months together settling into our new home, making new friends, getting the kids settled into their new school, and creating a new normal. Then the time came. Lee was told that he would be getting orders soon and would be serving in Afghanistan.

I took a deep breath and started wondering how the kids would react, which occasions would be missed, what conditions he would be living in, and how each of us will change during our time apart. I remembered the verses that helped get me through our first separation:

“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. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” James 1:2-4

A few weeks later we said goodbye. My 4 year old clung to her Daddy crying, “I just want you to stay.” “Consider it pure joy…” I sent my husband to a combat zone and then returned to the comfort of our own home without him. “..whenever you face trials of many kinds…” My 6 year old sat on her bed sobbing silently with the picture of Daddy clung to her chest. “….because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.” My 7 year old prayed, “Thank you for letting us have a good Daddy who will follow You no matter what.” “Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

This deployment will change us, but it will not break us. We will cry, but we will also laugh. We will be weak, but we will turn to Him and find strength. We will trust Him to work through Lee in Afghanistan and through us right where we are. We will learn, we will grow, and we will persevere. And when we face trials, we will consider it pure joy.

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14 thoughts on “Consider it Pure Joy

  1. Jen. I love ur posts. They always help me put things in prespective. I miss you n the kids so much. And im learning to consider it joy in my own life. Xoxoxo to you all.

  2. Dear sweet Jennifer, words fail me to express how much I love you and your blessed and beautiful family – every one of you. My tears have flown too, and I can only imagine how your heart feels. Much love and many prayers go out to you daily. We miss all of you so much. God is hearing all our prayers, and He is Our Rock, Refuge, Comforter, Strength, and He knows, even when we are heartbroken. Many hugs to you and your precious little ones and to your loving husband Lee. Fervent prayers continue ……

  3. Beautifully said. My husband is a retired COG Navy Chaplain and I understand completely. We are praying for Lee and your family, stay involved in your units activities, that really helps. When you get his address, I’d love to have it, we’ll send him a “Care Package” Again, praying for you.

  4. Wow. This definitely brings back all the memories of when Jason went to Iraq. It was hard, but your heart and mind are already in the right place of trusting God through it. ❤️ We will be praying for your family and for Lee. We would also like to send a care package when you get his address. Love you guys!

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