Joy!

When we are daily faced with a barrage of negative words and acts throughout the world, it is almost counter-intuitive to embody a joyful spirit. Yet true joy—Godly JOY—comes from knowing the One who is ever remaining in love, peace, and joy. In the book Every Thing You Ever Wanted to Know About Heaven, Dr. Peter Kreeft reminds us of this unique joy:

“One of the crucial differences between the Christianity of the New Testament and the ‘ordinary Christianity of the land’ is the difference between the crazy, total joy of the former, the joy that put songs on martyrs’ lips, and the joylessness of the latter . . . Joy is not something to work up, or imagine, or strive to attain. It IS. It is not first of all human feeling but a divine reality, not a future earthly goal but a present Heavenly achievement. And the Kingdom of Heaven has come to earth. That is the Good News. Christ is the God Who has come, and He is joy . . . Joy bubbles and brims at the heart of God, the heart of reality. God is an overflowing fountain of joy, a volcanic explosion of joy, a trillion burning suns of joy, a joy that would utterly break our hearts if we touched even a drop of it at its source. He is the joy that does break our hearts with love and longing whenever we catch a taste of it in human love or see the shadows of it in the beauties of nature or hear the remote echoes of it in great music . . . it is hope that brings the joy of running toward a beautiful goal.” (p. 196-197)

Here are some reminders of the sources of God’s joy:


GOD’S PRESENCE BRINGS JOY:

Psalm 16:11
“You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”
(Personalized): “I have made known to you the path of life and I fill you with joy in my presence, with eternal pleasures at my right hand.”

Psalm 43:4
“Then I will go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and my delight.”
(Personalized): “Come to my altar, to Me your God, and you will discover that I am your joy and your delight.


GOD’S LOVE BRINGS JOY:

Psalm 90:14
“Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days!”
(Personalized): “I will satisfy you this morning with My unfailing love that you may sing for joy and be glad all your days!”

John 15:10-11
“If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.”


GOD’S WORD BRINGS JOY:

Jeremiah 15:16
“When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight.”
(Personalized): “When my words come, eat them and they will be your joy and your heart’s delight.”

Psalm 19:8
“The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart.”
(Personalized): “My precepts are right giving joy to your heart!”


LOVING RELATIONSHIPS BRINGS JOY:

Philemon 7
“Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the Lord’s people.”

2 John 1:12
“I have much to write to you, but I do not want to use paper and ink. Instead, I hope to visit you and talk with you face to face, so that our joy may be complete.”

Joy is a fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22; Romans 14:17)


GOD’S PROMISE TO GIVE US JOY!

Romans 15:13
(Personalized): “I am the God of hope and I will fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in me!”