Thursday, July 16, 2015

Joy - Part 1

Joy: a feeling of great pleasure and happiness (noun)
        rejoice (verb)

Deuteronomy 28: 47-48a
If you do not serve the Lord your God WITH JOY AND ENTHUSIASM  for the abundant benefits you have received, you will serve your enemies whom the Lord will send against you.

That's some tough stuff right there.  If we aren't serving God, with joy, we are serving our enemies.  Well I, for one, don't want to be serving the prince of darkness or anyone else that he has sent to trip me up.  I want to serve God and I want to do it with JOY.

Can you think of things that give you joy?

  • sunshine after the rain
  • snuggling a new baby
  • coffee with a friend
  • flowers blooming
  • a job well done
Joy doesn't always come naturally to us though, does it?  I know that in the midst of my deepest depressions I would have laughed at that list.  If I was showing joy, I was faking it.  I've discovered that losing my joy, my natural cheery, joyful attitude doesn't just happen in one fell swoop.  It happens over time.  You don't know it is happening until the joy is gone.

Let's come up with some joy stealers:

  • exhaustion
  • clutter
  • illness (you or someone you care for)
  • extremely full schedule
  • jealousy - discontent
  • loneliness
  • family problems
  • financial problems
I'm not going to sit here and pretend that there are going to be easy answers for these problems.  Some of the problems that you and I encounter in life are HUGE.  They may show up suddenly but they will take a while to resolve and may never fully resolve here on earth.  That's a tough statement isn't it?  The fact is that sin is here and Satan is actively trying to cause problems.  That's his job and he is good at it.  He wants to do everything he can to make you loose your wanna know why?  Because if you have no joy you won't:

  • keep trying
  • praise God
  • hold on to hope
  • love others and yourself
  • give grace
That's why Satan wants to take your joy.  He wants you to give up and push God away.  He wants you to be angry and bitter.......That's what happens when you lose your God-given joy.


None of us want to live lives like that.  The thing is that your problems don't have to be resolved themselves for you to choose joy.  In the midst of all your troubles, you can choose to remain joyful....but its a choice you have to make....every hour of every day.  I'm NOT going to say that it will be easy.  It's not.  Good things in life rarely are.

Your assignment for the next 2 weeks is to study up on what the Bible says on Joy.  I'm not going to list all the verses in Psalm that joy is mentioned - there were a lot when I searched on my Bible Gateway app.  In Proverbs check out 2:10, 3:13, 8:32 and 34, 10:1, 11:10, 12:20, 13:9, 14:10, 15:20-21 and 30, 16:20, 17:21, 21:15, 23:24-25, 29:3, 6 and 18

That should keep you busy.  APPLY THE VERSES TO YOUR LIFE!!!! Reading/studying the Bible does absolutely no good if you aren't willing to apply what you learn to your daily life.

I'll leave you with this though:
Galatians 5:22-23
But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, JOY, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.  There is no law against these things!

If you have the Holy Spirit in your life then you CAN have joy!!!!  If you have no idea what I'm talking about but want to, please leave me a comment.....I would love to talk to you!

1 comment:

Johanna Broscious said...

Sooooooooo good! Thank you! A big hearty AMEN!