Would you agree with this statement: Happiness depends on external circumstances, but joy depends on the heart?
Why or why not?
And, what is joy?
How can you and I have more joy in our lives?
“Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.”
As we meet people from all walks of life and all nationalities, there is a key ingredient that we all look for – joy.
Jesus shares this thought in the scriptures above.
The condition of true joy is encompassed in our relationship with Jesus Christ.
We can see in these scriptures that joy is linked to love. If we feel unloved, we may not have joy in our lives.
Jesus loves us with the same love His Father loved Him. He encourages us to continue in His love and to abide in that love.
Jesus loves us with the same love His Father loved Him. He encourages us to continue in His love and to abide in that love. Click To Tweet
How Do We Continue In Him?
To ‘continue’ means we need to love others in the same manner He loves us.
This type of love includes a caring, concerned love that knows how to forgive. If we cannot forgive others, then we are not continuing in His love.
The Father and Son both have a forgiving attitude, and so should we.
As we go through life, we struggle with the things of this world.
There are days when we feel good about our relationships and the things we have accomplished, and there are days when we don’t feel so good.
There are days when we have illnesses and days when we feel great.
What is the Condition of Joy?
The condition of the joy of Christ is one where we continue to abide in Him.
This relationship is not based on good or bad days; it is based on a commitment to follow Him on the good days as well as the bad ones.
With Him, we know that we can have peace amid a storm.
Our joy is not based on the circumstances around us; rather, it is reflective of the condition of our hearts within us.
Allowing Christ to take residence in our heart and our abiding faith to always look to Him, will bring this joy.
Joy is internal, not external.
Allowing Christ to take residence in our heart and our abiding faith to always look to Him, will bring this joy. Click To Tweet
How Do We Practically Find More Joy?
The first key, to find more joy in your life, press in really close to Jesus.
James 4:8 tells us to,
“Draw near to God, and He will draw near to us.”
The second key, to find more joy in your life, spend time in prayer and the Bible.
Open the Bible and your journal, and start studying.
Here are some articles that can help:
The third key, to find more joy in your life, get as much good stuff pouring into your mind and heart as possible.
Turn up the Christian music.
Read great inspirational books.
Listen to praise music.
Hang out with people who love Jesus.
Listen to great sermons and podcasts.
Read encouraging blogs like this one.
Finally, to find more joy in your life, invite God to fill your heart with joy.
Father God is the One who created joy and bestows joy.
Ask Him to fill your heart with more joy!
Father God is the One who created joy and bestows joy. Ask Him to fill your heart with more joy! Click To Tweet
Do you feel loved?
Even if others let you down, you are still loved by Jesus and our Father.
How do you respond when others disappoint you?
Are you unforgiving and do you hold a grudge?
Don’t ever forget that you (and everyone else) disappoint the Lord, but He still loves us and forgives us (He tells us that in His Word).
PRAYER FOR JOY IN YOUR LIFE:
“Heavenly Father, thank You for the promise of joy in my life. Thank You for Your mercy, love, and forgiveness. Teach me to love and forgive others as You love and forgive me.
Help me to remember that joy depends on my connection with You, and not on my circumstances. As I deal with the struggles of life, I pray that I will allow You, the Prince of Peace, to reign in my life.”
As I deal with the struggles of life, I pray that I will allow You, the Prince of Peace, to reign in my life. Click To Tweet
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Don has been teaching Bible classes for over 40 years and a Christian blogger for the last 7 years.
He has been married to Debbie for 50 years and has two children and seven grandchildren. He is overwhelmed and humbled daily by the Lord’s presence.
You can check out Don’s blog at https://utvolwoody.wordpress.com/
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