Ever wonder what joy looks like in the Christian? I do. In fact, more so lately than usual. The Bible talks a lot about “the joy of the Lord”, etc., but what really is joy? To me, joy and happiness are two different things. Happiness is something the world gives; it’s temporary. Happiness is a bouquet of sunflowers (personally), but those flowers will soon die. Happiness is the perfect vanilla latte (yes please), but that latte will soon vanish….in your stomach. Happiness is listening to “Brown-Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison, only to find out that the song doesn’t last forever. These are fine things, but they aren’t forever. So the whole phrase “Happily Ever After” is not really true joy. True joy is not temporary, it’s eternal. True joy can only come from a relationship with the Savior, Jesus Christ. He is the dispenser of perfect joy. His joy that He gives to us, is joy forevermore. We have that joy because we love Him, the One Who paid the price for our sins. Joy cannot be obtained from any worldly thing. Joy comes from the Lord and Him alone!
So what does joy look like? The joy of the Lord should infiltrate our lives and pour out on the people around us. People should notice our joy through even practical things; words, actions, etc. But what about when we’re going through a tough time? Are we supposed to fake it and be joyful at all times? No. Don’t fake your joy. That’s not authentic. James 1:2 says, “Count it all joy when you fall into various trials.” Count it all joy, friends. In other words, change your perspective. Look on trials with a different mindset; a mindset of joy. Joy that only the Lord can give to you.
Nehemiah 8:10 says, “….Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”
When you have found that joy, it then becomes your strength. Christ’s joy gives us strength to endure. God’s joy changes our perspective and takes away our sorrow. So when you’re going through trials, people should be able to notice your sorrow, but they will also notice that you have joy in the midst of the pain. That joy that comes from the Lord is greater than any sorrow that comes our way.
I have to say, this comforts me so much. The fact that joy is possible with the Lord, just warms my heart. Furthermore, the fact that the joy of the Lord also gives me strength, is like the cherry on top. Actually, it’s way more than that, but you get the idea. 🙂
Isn’t God amazing!?
s a r a h g r a c e.