JOY /joi/ – the emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune or by the prospect of possessing what one desires
Based on the definition of joy, would you consider yourself a joyful person? The response from most people is probably the same… “Yeah, most of the time” or “Yeah, sometimes”.
But what about the rest of the time? Where is the joy that you had? Or if you are a person that tends to think you experience/have less joy than others, why are you having such a difficult time finding joy?
We can all agree that in order to find something, it really helps to know where to be looking, right? For instance if you are searching for gold, it helps to know where to begin digging! It would also help to know where gold is being sold so that you can go and buy some.
The same applies when searching for joy. It helps to know where it can be found.
One of the tricky things about buying gold is making sure it is real gold and not the fake stuff–“fools gold”. Again we can apply the same concept to finding real joy and not just “fools joy”. So the key is that we know where to look for a true non-artificial source of joy.
“The hope of the righteous brings joy, but the expectation of the wicked will perish.” (Proverbs 10:28)
“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” (Psalm 16:11)
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” (Romans 15:13)
These verses above can help us to understand where joy is found. Proverbs 10:28 tells us that the “hope of the righteous brings joy”. Jesus is the hope of the righteous (those who are those saved by grace through faith in Christ). The writer of Psalm 16:11 tells us that “in your presence there is fullness of joy”. In the presence of the Lord we don’t just have partial or a little joy, but fullness of joy! Then Paul writes in Romans 15:13 that in believing, we may be filled with all joy, not just some joy, from God!
Do you see? In the Lord and in His presence is where we can find joy! The joy that only comes through a relationship with the risen Savior. This is not some “fools joy” that goes away moments later or in moments of difficulty, but this is an everlasting joy that can sustain us through even difficult seasons!
Maybe that is where you find yourself right now, in the middle of a storm. You may feel like your joy and your peace is being taken from you and has become harder to find. In Matthew 8:23-27 we are reminded by a storm the disciples found themselves in, where our joy and peace can be found. In the midst of the storm, the disciples are frantic and panicking. In their fear, they run to Jesus and find Him asleep among all of the chaos.
Jesus is our source of joy and peace that can and will sustain us through even the roughest storms.