The Next Big Thing: Joy Stories

I’m taking part in The Next Big Thing, an exponentially increasing blog hop.  Author Chris Weigand invited me to participate.  Next week (1/9) Dr. Lisa Nicholas and Jennifer Fitz will post their Next Big Thing. Their links are at the end of this post.

My Next Big Thing involves you, the Joy Alive Network and New Year’s resolutions.  The new Joy Stories tab on this site brings you an opportunity to evangelize by sharing your own story of conversion, reversion or a miracle you experienced. It provides a way to complete your joy, as St. John spoke of in his first letter.

“Beloved: What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we looked upon and touched with our hands concerns the Word of life—for the life was made visible; we have seen it and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was made visible to us. What we have seen and heard we proclaim now to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; for our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. We are writing this so that our joy may be complete.” (1 Jn 1:1-4)

As spokesman for the Apostles, John proclaims Jesus, the eternal Word of life, made visible to them. Think about how you have seen the Word of life made visible to you from the beginning of your faith walk.

John then tells us why the Apostles proclaim their faith story. His confident assurance in what they have experienced compels him to encourage his readers to draw closer in fellowship with God and with one another. John’s act of evangelizing others from his own experience completes his joy.

What have you heard from the Word that quickens your spirit? In this Year of Faith, Joy Stories gives you an opportunity to reflect on your faith journey, where it began at your baptism, how it came alive and grew strong with difficulties, victories and miracles. Where did God take you last year and where is he leading you as you step into this new year?

You will find several conversion stories under Joy Stories. Perhaps, like Dr. Michael Norman, you suffered great difficulties from evil men and then God’s miracles amazed you.

Or, like Kathy Szymanski, are you writing a journal about your life with cancer and want to honor the Lord and others supporting you in your battle?

Sarah Reinhard recounts her conversion to Catholicism. Is that your story? Or were you a CINO (Catholic in Name Only) and now your faith is coming alive? That's the reversion story of Jennifer Fitz.

Your story, like theirs has three stages:

Who you were before your conversion, reversion or miracle happened.

What happened to change you.

Who you are now.

Whatever your heart compels you to share, I pray that you will contact me and complete your joy by posting your Joy Story for the glory of God.

To read a different Next Big Thing, hop back to what Chris Weigand posted last week. Hop to A Catholic on Jan 9 for Next Big Thing for Lisa Nicholas and to for her exciting news. You can find all four of us at

 (@ 2013 Nancy H C Ward)

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About Nancy Ward

Nancy HC Ward is a journalist, author, and speaker who blogs about Catholicism, her conversion, and Christian community at,
 7 websites and 7 magazines. She loves to share her faith story and help others share theirs through her Sharing Your Faith Stories seminars, also available on DVD. She contributed four chapters to The Catholic Mom’s Prayer Companion. She facilitates the Dallas/Fort Worth Catholic Writers and a critique group for the Catholic Writers Guild, where she serves as a board member.
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2 Responses to The Next Big Thing: Joy Stories

  1. Nancy says:

    Chris Weigand, who was the next stop on the blog hop, is deferring to Sr. Marie-Paul, so hop to

  2. Great article thanks for participating.

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