What does it mean to you to be joyful? Think of what your definition of joy is. Where do you find joy?
According to Merriam Webster’s dictionary, the definition of joy is the “emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune or by the prospect of possessing what one desires”. I don’t really like that definition. You know why? It doesn’t mention anything about finding joy even when you don’t get what you desire. When times are tough or you feel like you’re failing, joy can still be found. Sorry Merriam Webster, but I’d say that’s not the best definition for joy.
“Count it all joy, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors.” (James 1:2-3)
Joy is a fruit of the Spirit. It’s part of the Lord, and we must all strive to achieve it. Without it, it will be hard to carry on through life. Through the ups and the downs, through the peaks and pits, my friends, we need to hold onto joy. You and I both know everyday comes with its high’s and low’s. The lows can be pretty tough, but we must count it all joy because without the lows, there wouldn’t be highs. Without the pits, we wouldn’t be able to dive deeper into our relationship with the Lord. Our “faith-lives” wouldn’t be “forced into the open and show its true colors”.
If there’s something holding you back today, it’s holding you there for a reason. The Lord didn’t give us tests and challenges to see us fail in misery. He isn’t a bad guy, you know. He put us through trials to see how much we can endure on our own until we trust in him. Even though these difficult trials may leave us feeling down in the dumps, we must realize it’s for a reason. The reason is to make us stronger and our relationship with God stronger. We should laugh at all our defeats and challenges, because in the end, our failures won’t matter, but how you acted during them, will.
“So also you have sorrow now, but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you.” (John 16:22)
Remember that no one can take your joy from you. It’s a fruit of the Spirit. Live with joy in your heart always.