Emotions are great passengers but horrible drivers!
Emotions are an essential part of human life that, though broken by sin, are redeemed and restored by Christ.
In Galatians 5:22-23, there are nine by-products produced by the Holy Spirit in the believer’s life. These are not emotions but like a state of being, a result of choice. Let’s look at one fruit in particular,” joy.” Having joy is part of the experience of being a Christian. In the Old Testament, joy is closely related to victory over one’s enemies, (1Sam 18:6). In the New Testament, “joy” is still used for victory, but focuses more on salvation. Joy comes on account of what Christ has done, irrelevant of whatever other circumstances are happening in one’s life. We are reminded in Psalm 126:3, “The LORD has done amazing things for us.What joy!”
Have you lost your joy? Unlike happiness, joy is deep. It comes from the inside and it’s not dependent on circumstances. We are to be joyful, to choose joy in our trials. This does not mean denying the pain of our trials but knowing we can always be connected to the source of joy, God Himself. Why do you think the Bible commands us to rejoice? I don’t know about you, but my thinking and attitude can change drastically within a short time. But when I start choosing joy daily, things change. Below are some quotes that remind us of the benefits of when you make joy a part of your life.
“Joy is the settled assurance that God is in control of all the details of my life, the quiet confidence that ultimately everything is going to be all right, and the determined choice to praise God in all things.” Kay Warren, Choose Joy: Because Happiness Isn’t Enough
“The Lord gives his people perpetual joy when they walk in obedience to him.” Dwight L. Moody
“Joy does not simply happen to us. We have to choose joy and keep choosing it every day.” Henri Nouwen
“I choose joy… I will invite my God to be the God of circumstance. I will refuse the temptation to be cynical… the tool of the lazy thinker. I will refuse to see people as anything less than human beings, created by God. I will refuse to see any problem as anything less than an opportunity to see God.” Max Lucado
Father God, thank you that you are a loving and consistent God, never changing. You are the God of hope that can fill us with all joy and peace as we trust in You. May our joy in you be contagious. In Jesus’ name, Amen.