Do you have joy like a fountain? Or has your well all dried up? Are you able to follow the Apostle Paul’s advice, “Whatever happens, my dear brothers and sisters, keep being joyful…” – my paraphrase of Philippians 3:1.
No one likes to take advice from someone who cannot relate to all you may have been through or are currently going through. However, Paul encountered much adversity and suffered many hardships all while serving the Lord, including the following and much more: being imprisoned, 5 times whipped with 39 lashes, 3 times beaten with rods, robbed, mistreated and misunderstood by his own people and others, experiencing broken friendships, and often not having enough food to eat – AND ALL WHILE FAITHFULLY SERVING GOD! STILL HIS MESSAGE WAS REJOICE IN THE LORD ALWAYS!
Do you have joy no matter what is happening to you and/or is going on around you?
This is one of the messages God has given me in the midst of life’s trials and messiness. Some people think joy is the absence of pain. It’s not. Often, those whose lives are filled with much sorrow and many challenges experience the most joy. In God’s presence is fullness of JOY! (Psalm 16:11)
Jesus told us the things He told us in His Word SO THAT our JOY WOULD OVERFLOW (John 15:11). Paul reminds us to “be joyful in the Lord always” (Philippians 4:4). Many have forgotten that it is part of God’s will for us to be continually joyful (1 Thessalonians 5:16).
Okay, so I realize even sharing these verses doesn’t automatically make us oh so joyful.
Since I always get this right and do it so well, I’m always bright and cheery Joyful Jenny – haha! NOT! I’m just pressing into God’s grace more and more and desire to obey; and, over the last few years especially, God has been bringing a restoration of joy in my life personally. The joy of the Lord is our strength (Nehemiah 8:10) and this is one of the reasons the enemy is after our joy.
Here’s what helps me:
- More time in God’s Word (Psalm 119:1-2);
- more time praising and worshiping God throughout my day (Psalm 34:1);
- speaking God’s Word and His promises out loud to hear them myself (Proverbs 18:22);
- casting off worry by praying about every single thing that even attempts to bring worry and fear (Philippians 4:6; 1 Peter 5:7);
- and getting together with friends who are traveling the same journey of faith for encouragement and support (you know that small group and church community thing works really well – Acts 1:14).
The SOURCE of true JOY is Jesus.
The joy that is birthed and flows from God’s Spirit is not predicated on any circumstance or material possession, but instead is ONLY found in the abiding presence of Jesus.
Lord I need You More, If I am to be filled with Your JOY! May the joy of our salvation be restored unto us! (Psalm 51:12)
More Jesus = More Joy!
More Word = More Joy!
More Worship = More Joy!
WHAT TO SAY FOR YOUR JOY FULL DAY!:
Let the redeemed of the Lord say so and speak JOYfully today!
May you walk joyfully in His will on this joyful day He has made and may His joyful presence be your strength for today. Whatever occurs, may His JOY be yours!
MAY THE GOD OF HOPE FILL YOU WITH ALL JOY! Joy like a fountain – let it flow!