In high school my best friend’s name was Joy – she was bubbly, full of life and had a contagious laugh. As some of you know, I have the tendency to change people’s names and turn them into songs. Joy was no exception, i would often greet her with “Joy to the world.”
Would you be surprised if I told you my friend wasn’t always joyful? Joy doesn’t come from a name and it’s definitely not dependent upon our circumstances. Many people interchange the words joy and happiness, but first let’s look at the difference. Happiness is dependent on your circumstances while you experience joy in the midst of your circumstances. Happiness is a state of mind – joy is a state of heart.
Let’s look at the definition of Joy.
(1) Great delight;gladness of heart
(2) The happy state that results from knowing and serving God
(3) That deep, abiding,inner rejoicing in the Lord
(4) Happy, joyful, cheerful, rejoicing,festive
It’s amazing that the second fruit would be “joy” – After his love, God wants to release his joy into our system. Many people have become disappointed, unfulfilled, weak and tired after their pursuit of happiness. King Solomon outlined a series of experiments in his quest of happiness and concluded that true joy is determined by God.(Eccles 2 ). The tragedies of life can leave us depleted, exhausted, discouraged and empty. I encourage you today to stop by God’s filling station and allow him to fill you up with “joy”. Bounty is not the quicker picker upper – joy will pick you up faster than bounty. The bible declares that the joy of the lord is our strength. Without God’s joy operating in our lives, everything becomes a chore and we develop a complaining spirit. This spirit is often transferred to others and oftentimes we are miserable without cause.
Joy is inseparable from our relationship with God and as we seek to know and understand his purpose for our lives, he fills and refills us with his joy. In actual fact, joy is the sign that life has found its purpose. Are you experiencing God’s joy today? Are you finding fulfillment in what he’s called you to do?
NB – No one can steal your joy unless you open the door for theml
Fill in the blanks below and read the following scriptures on joy -Psalm 16:11, 1Thess 1:6, Isaiah 51:10-11, Matthew 25:21
The ———- of the Lord is ———— Strength (which book of the bible)
Folly is ———– to him who is destitute of ————————-, but a man of ————————- walks uprightly (Prov 15:21)
Beauty for —————-, the oil of ———– for ———————– , the garment of —————– for the spirit of heaviness; that
(Isaiah 61: 1-3)