Fruit Of The Spirit: Joy

Joy sign

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23 

After setting the base of love, Paul mentions joy as the second fruit of the Spirit. Joyo is something that people sing about during the Christmas season–Joy to the World. Yet, joy is something that appears to escape or evade many people.

Walking around and looking at the faces of people, very few show any signs of any type of joy in their lives. Often all that is seen is hurt, pain, suffering, and depression, anything but joy.

Suffering man

What is joy?

Often people will think of joy as happiness, but it is much more. Throughout the bible joy is often mentioned.

I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing (joy) in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent. Luke 15:7

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Let the sea resound, and all that is in it; let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them! Let the trees of the forest sing, let them sing for joy before the Lord, for he comes to judge the earth. Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever. 1 Chronicles, 16: 32-34 

Psalm 16_11

There are also many other verses that talk about joy. Joy is found in heaven and on this earth. We are to be filled with joy.

So what is joy? It is more than just happiness, it is extreme happiness. It is happiness in spite of what is going on around you. Being filled with God’s joy is being filled with His extreme happiness and pleasure.

You may now be asking how can I be filled with joy when this world is filled with such hate, destruction, pain and suffering. My life is full of hurt and pain. I am struggling to survive, so where can I find joy in all of this?

Elephan struggling

Joy can be found in the Lord and in the salvation that He provides. Take a moment to look at and read 1 Peter 1. After talking about salvation, Peter says that in all this you greatly rejoice, even though you may be going through many trials.

Think about how exciting salvation is. All of your sins have been removed forever! You get to live forever! You have a day that is coming in which there will never be any more sorrow, pain, suffering, sickness or death! Jesus is preparing a place for you in heaven so that you may be with Him and the Father for all eternity!

Man with joy

All of these things are wrapped up in salvation, what Jesus did for you on the cross. And one of the greatest things is that this salvation is free. All you have to do is accept it, deny self and follow Jesus. What better news could you ever receive than this?

While the world has no hope and is seeing only death and destruction, you can see life beginning and spreading around the world. God is a God who brings life to people, not death. He wants all to be successful in Jesus and building His kingdom. This is a great joy to have.

Along with what God is providing for you, you can also see when God moves in the hearts of other people and they begin to follow Jesus. All of heaven is rejoicing over the new salvation. You can also rejoice with great joy.

Now as a believer and follower of Jesus, you are filled with God’s Holy Spirit. You have His Holy Spirit living in you and guiding you. If you have His Holy spirit living in you, then there should be some sign of His presence in your life. This is where the fruit of the Spirit comes in.

Cluster of grapes

You should be bearing fruit as to what is inside of you. Your life should be one that is bearing and showing love (self-sacrificing love) and joy. Do not be like many in the church walking around with a serious frown on their face and no joy in life at all.

Allow joy to overflow in your life so much that those around you cannot help but see it and get a taste of it in their own lives. Live in the positive mindset that God has saved you, given you a new life and He is in control. This will show joy to this world.

Thank you for stopping by and reading this. Next week I will be looking at the fruit of the Spirit–peace. Until then, may your life be filled with God’s love and joy.

Psalm 145:1-2 Everyday Doings

Mount Baker

I will exalt you, my God the King; I will praise your name for ever and ever. Every day I will praise you and extol your name for ever and ever. Psalm 145:1-2 

There are things that people do every day. Some things are the same with most ever person all over the world, such as eating, drinking, putting on clothes, and sleeping. Some things that are done are done involuntarily, such as breathing.

Along with the normal things that people do, there are some things that some do and some do not do. Some people will do some type of exercise every day, such as lifting weights, running, swimming, or some other exercise.

Many have hobbies that they strive to work on every day a little. This can be sewing, reading, writing, painting, or some other hobby.

These things are done either out of necessity or because they like doing it.

David tells God that he will exalt and praise His name every day for ever and ever. Not only will he praise, but will do it with excitement and joy.

One reason many people do a lot of hobbies is to escape the struggles and pressures of this life. Every day there are many difficulties that people must face and so they turn to something to help them cope with it.

Believers can praise God. This turns the focus off the problems and onto God. And the list of what a person can praise God for is endless.

One only has to think about what Jesus did on the cross for him to make him break out in praise to God for His great love and sacrifice. Each moment that a person has breath to breathe is a reason to praise God. There is no end for reasons to praise God.

When life is going good for you and there are no major struggles, praise God. At the same time, when there are struggles in your life that are weighing you down and feel like they are crushing you, praise God.

Make praising God your number one priority to accomplish every day. Seek a way to praise God every hour that you are awake of every day.

The more you praise God, the more you will want to praise God. The more you realize how great God is, the more you will realize how great He really is.

Praising God should be your greatest hobby each day.

I pray today that you will know God’s love for you; that you will know God’s sacrifice for you; that you will know the blessings God has given you; and that you will praise God every day in every situation with great joy.

Psalm 98:1 Singing A New Song

Happy boy

Sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvelous things; his right hand and his holy arm have worked salvation for him. Psalm 98:1

There is found a new excitement in life when a person survives a near death experience. When a person is in an automobile accident and by all normal means should have died, but did not, he is excited and full of joy. He will burst into song about how glad he is that he did not die.

That is a joy that bubbles up from the inside and pours out. It is a joy that cannot be contained or kept quiet.

Most people, however, do not experience something like this. They just keep going through life day to day with nothing major happening. If anything, they are dreading each day and depressed. They do not see anything to sing about.

The author tells the people to sing a new song because of what God has done. God had worked out salvation for the people.

God had made a way to save a person from His sins by sending Jesus to die on the cross. With His death and resurrection, Jesus was able to destroy sin and provide life, eternal life. A person can be saved from sin and death.

This is something that a person can get excited about and sing for joy. It gives a person a new song in his life, one that will not end. It is no longer dependent upon things going well, because this is the best and is eternal. No one can take away the salvation that Jesus has provided.

Instead of going through life with dread, fear or depression, one can go with a song of joy. This is a new song in life, one that the world does not know or understand.

If you know Jesus as your Savior, think about what He has done for you. You were on a path to death. You had a death sentence upon your head, with no hope of missing it.

Now you have life for eternity. You have been forgiven of sins done wrong. You have been given a new lease on life, a reason to live. Sing for joy.

Burst out in song letting the world know what God has done for you. Let the world know the power God has for them.

This is the new song you can sing, regardless of what is happening in and around you in this world.

I pray today that you will know the salvation Jesus provides you; that you will know the joy of walking with God; that God will put a new song in your heart; and that you will let the world know about what Jesus has done. 

Psalm 66:1-2 Shouts Of Joy And Praise

Cheering crowd

Shout for joy to God, all the earth! Sing the glory of his name; make his praise glorious. Psalm 66:1-2 

When something exciting has happened or is happening, people shout for joy. They are excited about what is going on and want everyone around to know it. In the process of the excitement, people will drop all inhibitions and go crazy with their excitement.

One area that people get excited about is when watching a sport. When their favorite team makes a winning score against a large, difficult team or in a challenging game, they shout for joy. People will jump up and down in excitement, screaming and hollering for joy at what had occurred.

Shouting for joy at a winning score in a game, is only temporary and has no real value in the larger scheme of life. Yet, the joy is there for a moment.

The writer of this psalm tells the people to shout for joy to God and to give Him praise.

God is always doing great things in a life of a believer. However, many believers are quiet about it. They might tell a few friends, but not very loudly and not enough for the world to hear.

Every day God is showing a believer new mercies. Every day God is showing His grace. Every day God is working in the life of a believer. These are just a few reasons to shout for joy.

The world needs to know what God is doing. They need to know that one is excited about God and what God is doing or has done in his life. This does not have to be quiet in a corner or only inside the church service.

Shouting for joy to God needs to be done in the open for all the world to hear.

Take a moment to think about all the great things God has done in your life. Think about what He has saved you from. These are some reasons to shout for joy.

Now go out and shout for joy. Let the world know what God has done and is doing in your life. This will encourage other believers in being His witness and it can be a great witness to those who do not know God, yet.

Be excited about God to the point that everyone will know it and get excited with you. Go out and shout some praise to God today!

I pray today that you will know what God has done for you; that you will know how great God is; that you will shout praises to God; that your joy in God will be evident to all around you; and that you will praise God at all times.