1 Peter1:8 Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see Him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory. (KJV)
1 Peter1:8 You love Him, although you have not seen Him, and you believe in Him, although you do not now see Him. So you rejoice with a great and glorious joy which words cannot express. (GNT)
Happiness is based on physical happenings. Joy is deeper. It is based on inner rest. Joy is everlasting. Happiness is temporary. Joy is finding life useful.
Why should I be joyful?
It is the prerequisite for victorious living – it is with joy that we draw from the well of Salvation – Isaiah 12:3. This implies that all of the victory we will draw and experience in Christ is dependent on our embracing and applying the joy of the Lord to our lives.
It is a fruit of the Holy Spirit – fruits are very important part of human nutrition because of the vitamins and nutrients they supply our body. Joy is one the fruits of the Holy Spirit and we can have and partake of it in order to improve the quality of our Christian life and maximise our potential. We partake of the fruit of joy by taking directions from the Holy Spirit and allowing His instructions to be our guiding light and not our feelings or our circumstances. We get divine supplements from joy that help our spiritual immunity against depression and hopelessness.
It is medicinal – The Bible says that a merry heart does well like medicine but a broken spirit dries the bones. Proverbs 17:22. Nobody likes to be around anything or anyone that drags them down but we love to do the things and be around people that inspire, encourage and lift us up. Joy is a life booster and it gives us spiritual lift. A dosage of joy will keep you up and going. The lack of joy results in a sickness in the spirit of a person. Joy is an evidence that God’s active presence has been embraced. The Bible says that in the presence of God, there is fullness of joy and at His right hand are pleasures forevermore.
How do we keep the joy full?
Prayer and the Word
Since God is the Source of our joy, we need to stay connected to Him and we stay connected to Him through His Word and prayer. The Bible says that the Word of God is like honey and honey brings sweetness. As we meditate on God’s Word, we enjoy sweet fellowship with God our Father. When we obey the instructions we receive in His Word, we encounter the joy that comes with obedience and partnering with the almighty God.
Prayer is communion with God our Father. You get to know a person better and become intimate with them through communication. As we communicate with God in prayer, we encounter Him in the sweetest way because He likes talking to His children. John 15:9-11 As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love. If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love. These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.
Praise and worship
We also keep our joy full by praising and worshipping God with songs of praise. When praises go up blessings come down.
Habakkuk 3:17-19 – Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation. The Lord God is my strength, and He will make my feet like hinds’ feet, and He will make me to walk upon mine high places.
We also keep our joy full by telling other people about the joy of the Lord and by encouraging them. The Bible says that you shall reap what you sow. So, if we sow joy, we will reap joy. So tell others about the joy of the Lord and release joy into their darkness and discouragement and you will reap a harvest of joy yourself.
Then he said to them, Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength. (Nehemiah 8:10 NKJV)
Faith declarations of Joy –
Our words rule us. What you say is what eventually becomes of you. When you make declarations of joy, your spirit begins to respond and get filled with joy. Psalm 35:27-28 Let them shout for joy, and be glad, that favour my righteous cause: yea, let them say continually, Let the Lord be magnified, which hath pleasure in the prosperity of his servant. And my tongue shall speak of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long.
John 16:33 – These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
Problem is one of the results and the fact that we live in a fallen world. Problems bring unhappiness and frustrations. Jesus faced problems too but He overcame every single one of them. So, He told us that we will also face problems but we are never to allow the problem to steal our joy because He has overcome every problem that we could ever face for us. So, when you go through problems don’t allow the problems to go through you. When the boat is on water it is safe but when water gets into it, it starts to sink. So stay afloat.
Apostle Paul prayed that God will deliver us from wicked and unreasonable people. The Bible says that not everybody has faith: meaning that there would always be some people that wouldn’t buy into the idea of your joy and would do everything to sabotage you and make life difficult for you. Furthermore, hurtingpeople hurt and people will always be people. So don’t allow negative and bitter people take your joy even if they are family members or close friends. And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you. (John16:22 KJVA)
Pride and current happiness –
The good is sometimes the enemy of the best. Sometimes, present and past happiness could deter us from pressing on into the supernatural power of joy ahead. For example, when we begin to rest our hope and put our trust in our good results and base our trust and hope in the blessings rather than the Blesser, then we become like the rich fool who refused to acknowledge God his good fortune and put his hope and future success on his current happiness (Luke 12:16-21). He eventually lost everything. So be wise not to allow your current happiness hinder you from the stability that joy brings. Never forget that there is always more in store for you in God.
For Further Study:
John 15:1-8, Luke 12:16-21
Questions to reflect on:
- Do you have any joy?
- How joyful are you?
I will value the joy that God has given me and I will not lose it to carelessness.