Finding Joy

Over the last three weeks, we’ve discussed 

LOVE as 1st Fruit of Spirit

The second listed in Gal 5 is 

1) JOY

In this time of Covid-19, 

it’s a very appropriate subject.

All around the world, 

people remain in isolation.

With isolation comes loneliness, 

sadness & depression.

These are hard times.

The first three fruits (love, joy & peace) 

comprise habits of the Christian mind.

2) The Greek word for JOY (Char), 

has same root as GRACE (Charis).

There is a connection between Joy & Grace.

Those who have experienced God’s grace, 

can view the Christian life as JOYFUL.

3) Joy- freedom from anxious worries or fears.

James 1:2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.

Christian joy is lived out in midst of suffering.

Joy looks at a problem & says:

“God’s got it!”

4) Joy is not an emotion,

    It’s a mindset.

You don’t wake up joyful,

You wake up determined to be joyful.

Happiness is not joy.

Joy is not happiness.

Happiness is an emotion we feel 

when things are going good.

We are happy, when we buy a new car.

We are sad, when we make 1st car payment.

Happiness is predicated on things going well.

Joy isn’t.

Joy provides peace & contentment 

in midst of storm.

Joy is closely related to HOPE.

Hope says, 

“It’s not going to last forever.”

“Hang-in there”

4.5)

“Sorrow may last for the night, 

but joy comes in the morning.”-Ps 30:5

Hebrew writer describes inter-relation (Joy & Hope)

5)

For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.- Hebrews 12:2

The cross by any standard was dreaded.

Jesus even said:

“Father, if it is possible let this cup pass from me.”- Mt 26:39

The thought of you being in Heaven 

brought Him JOY.

That joy gave Him hope.

(The pain of this cross won’t last)

That hope pushed him to die for our sins.

6) 

Jn 15:11  I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.

The same JOY that Jesus had, 

is to be in us.

Let me remind you:

Joy does not depend on circumstances.

Joy rests in this ONE FACT:

7) God is in Control.

He’s bigger than Covid-19

He’s bigger than the recession.

He’s bigger than our social unrest

He’s fully aware of what’s going-on.

He won’t fail you.

8) 

Rom 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. If I get Covid-19, God is still at work. It could be a spiritual test. It could be my HOMECOMING. Remember…. for the Christian, There are no bad options. That’s how we have to look at Covid-19. We must be smart, But we cannot live in fear. We cannot let the devil steal our joy. One of the greatest robbers of joy,  is the national news. The depression that people are facing is real. The stress on families is  resulting in abuse & domestic violence. Suicide rates are up. That’s where you fit into God’s plan…. Again, Jesus said: 9) Jn 15:11  I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. THE WORLD NEEDS YOU Where do you go  when you’re not feeling joyful? Holy Spirit Again, JOY is a FRUIT of Spirit. It’s comes with abiding in Him. 10)  Rom 15:13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

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