by Linda Cox

Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Romans 12:15 (NIV)

… a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance … Ecclesiastes 3:4 (NIV)

I hesitate to say it, but often times it’s easier to mourn with someone than to rejoice with them. When a person loses a loved one or has some other tragedy in their lives, we reach out to them with prayers, visits, flowers, cards, hugs, and even clean up and rebuilding. That includes remembering as time goes by, like continued support of those affected by September 11, 2001. Just letting them know we care speaks volumes to their hearts.

Rejoicing with someone, however, can be a little challenging, especially if it’s over something that we wanted for ourselves but they received instead. That promotion at work we’ve spent years striving for. A new home we’ve longed to have. A clear medical report when our biopsy came back cancer. Another author getting published before we do. The list could go on.

I’d like to think I could rejoice with others when they receive good news. Although in all honesty, would I really applaud and cheer when the person next to me solved the puzzle on Wheel of Fortune right after my spin was “lose your turn”? I won’t be presumptuous and even think that I easily rejoice with others as much as I should. But I am truly rejoicing with all my heart right now.

My sister and BFF since second grade is celebrating the release of her debut novel, The Road to Mercy. Kathy Harris has allowed me the honor and privilege of sharing in her journey. I know how hard she has worked for her dream to become a reality, how the grace of God enabled her to overcome all the road blocks the devil threw her way, and how her heart’s desire was simply to praise and honor her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Instead of my leaving a comment for Kathy on her Divine Detour feature, I thought we could all celebrate her debut novel today and use it as a reminder of how we can rejoice more with others and dance in celebration of the good news in their lives.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to grab Kathy’s book and dance and squeal with joy.

Linda Cox is a regular contributor to DivineDetour. She recently retired after twenty-five years as a district office secretary for the State of Illinois. Her first loves are studying the Bible and reading, but Linda occasionally tries her hand at writing. Her work is published in All My Bad Habits I Learned from Grandpa (Thomas Nelson), The One-Year Life Verse Devotional (Tyndale), Life Lessons from Grandparents (Write Integrity) and the Love Is a Verb devotional (Bethany House). She and her husband live on a farm with their two indoor/outdoor farm mutts.