Rejoice Always

Viewpoint Church high school pastor AJ Swies visited Estancia High School to share his powerful testimony with the huddle. AJ described growing up in a seemingly perfect Christian home, until his parents started abusing alcohol and ultimately divorcing.


As a middle school student, AJ became angry with God and angry with his parents for failing to serve as godly examples in his life. As a high school student, AJ realized he was on a path headed for destruction and made the decision to turn his life around and pursue God again. However, it wasn’t until he forgave his parents for all the pain that they caused him that AJ truly began to feel the joy of the Lord again.


AJ realized that his anger against his parents had been enslaving him and preventing him from experiencing the incredible joy and peace God was offering him. AJ explained that, since the day he forgave his parents, he has been filled to the brim with the joy of the Lord. He reminded the students that life is still hard sometimes, and he still faces challenges and disappointments, but that the joy of the Lord never leaves him. He encouraged the students to examine their own hearts and see what might be preventing them from experiencing the joy that God freely offers.

“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

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