Thursday, October 7, 2010

Thankful Thursday - Joy


Today's Thankful Thursday crowd is meeting over at Lynn's Spiritually Unequal Marriage.  Why not join in?

Lynn has chosen the topic of joy.  She shared how the changing of the seasons brought her joy.  I agree, I love the change of seasons as well.  There are great points about each season, things that I look forward to whenever I flip the calendar pages to a new month.  I'm so glad that God does give us change.  I think we humans crave newness from time to time.  We get easily bored!

I've always liked the word joy.  I named my first daughter, Elissa Joy, because I loved the name "Joy," and we were filled with joy when after years of infertility, God blessed us with a daughter.

Joy is a much different word than happiness.  Happiness is dependent on my circumstances, joy is dependent on my beliefs. We Americans are bound and determined to search for what makes us happy.  We consider it a right, the pursuit of happiness is a freedom for which we will fight to the death.

Joy is a fruit of the spirit. Only by abiding in Christ, leaning on Him, trusting in Him, believing His promises can we be truly joyful in even the worst of circumstances.  As spiritual pilgrims, we know that the circumstances of life are only temporary and nothing can compare with our destination - Heaven!

I'm thankful that God wants us to have joy.  One of my favorite scriptures is John 10:10, Amplified Version

"The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows)."

Enjoying life - to me, that brings joy! God intends us to have joy both here and in eternity.  The times that life is less than joyful are the times we can trust God to bring us through and on to the joy. If we really believe His word, we can trust Him that everything will turn out alright.  I'm not saying we won't go through hard times - we will! But even in the hard times, we trust that He knows what He is doing and at some point, it will be okay. That is what brings us joy!  What does the child of satan have to look forward to in his day of trial?  The trial he is going through is all he's ever going to have, unless he repents and accepts Jesus as his Lord and Savior.

I must end this random discourse on the topic of joy with a little poem I learned in Sunday School as a child:

Jesus
Others
You
What a wonderful way to spell joy!

It' so true, if you focus first on Jesus, then on others, and lastly, yourself, you will live a joyful life. 

8 comments:

Heather said...

This is such a great post,Jerralea!! Thank you for writing it!! It's so true that joy is not related to circumstances. Happiness is great and mentioned in the Bible too. I think we should seek to be happy too and not let our circumstances change that.

Irritable Mother said...

Hey, my daughter's middle name is Joy, too! We chose that name in faith - and she lives up to it every day. *grin*

Joshlin said...

I love this post and how you explain that Joy is so much more than just happiness! I think I will be printing this post out and putting it in my prayer journal. Thank you!

Pia said...

great post! "Happiness is dependent on my circumstances, joy is dependent on my beliefs." --- so true.

God bless.

Denise said...

Such a wonderful post.

Rita T. said...

Great JOY acronym. Have a wonderful weekend!

Melli said...

What a SUPER post Jerralea! MY eldest daughter's middle name is Joy also! Amanda Joy! Yes indeed! I knew she was a precious gift from God - which is what Amanda means... and she brought me GREAT joy! And she IS a joyful one! And thank you for reminding me just HOW active God WAS in my life back then... I knew it... but sometimes I forget!

Lynn said...

Jerralea,

Girl, my daughter's middle name is JOY also. Whoa.

What a fantastic post filled with truth. Awesome.

Happy TT and see you again this Thursday. Hugs. Lynn