Life is a mixed baggage: Is Your Joy Alive?
God is with me all the time (He sure is) and He has blessed me far beyond what I would ever imagine. However, that doesn’t mean that I’m immune to bad things happening. Just like you, I’ve had my share of trials and bad times.
Life is a mixed baggage of good times and bad times, all happening at once. You’re celebrating a wedding, new birth, promotion and in the midst of the celebration you receive bad news, a loved one is terminally ill, your child is in trouble, a dear friend died. Now you’re filled with mixed emotions, happiness on one end and sadness on the other end.
There are times we’re faced with one bad thing after another and we can’t catch a break, we’re hating it. Then there are times we receive one good thing after another and we don’t want to catch a break, we’re loving it. Thank God that for most people, the good outweighs the bad but because we have the tendency to focus and dwell on the bad, we feel like there’s more bad than good happening in our lives.
The truth is, this life is not perfect and we’re all going to go through bad stuff. The good news is that we don’t have to face bad times alone. We can choose to face it with God. He will get you through bad times, and when you trust Him, He will make that bad thing work for your good. I know this so well. When you’re going through a storm, you’re scared, you feel awful, like it’s never going to pass… but it will. Just trust God and be patient and wait for the tide to turn. While you’re going through the storm… Is your Joy alive?
The Joy of the Lord is in You
God is joy! He wants us to be filled with His joy. We all know that there is a difference between joy and happiness. Happiness comes and goes depending on our circumstances. Joy stays no matter our circumstances. When we’re saved, Jesus lives in us through the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit produces in us the Fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. The Joy of the Lord may be inexplicable to those who have not received Jesus as their Lord and Savior but for the saved, it’s in you.
When you’re going through bad times, the Joy of the Lord will keep you smiling, sane, positive, refreshed, renewed, re-energized, encouraged, uplifted, motivated, comforted and hopeful. You will be equipped to cope, withstand, overcome, get through and move on. Only God can do this, through Jesus, who lives inside you. Because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than any battle you face, and God’s will for your life will always win. I know this first hand because it has happened to me over and over again and it will for you too.
When I’m feeling down or low, joy keeps me going. Joy makes me see God and the good in every situation. It makes me see the glass half-full and not half-empty and the bright side of the dark side. Joy makes me focus on the good and not on the bad and feel genuinely happy for others’ good news and not envious or resentful. It makes me thankful for what I have and not focus on what I don’t have. Joy makes me learn from the past, live in the present and look forward to the future. It makes me cherish and appreciate every breath I take.
Is YOUR JOY alive? If it’s not, then it’s time to turn it on!
I’m going to take a moment to talk to Christians. You do know that God wants us to live a joy-full life even when bad things happen, when things we expect to happen don’t happen, and when the unexpected happens. He wants us to be positive and hopeful and trust Him in all circumstances. But not all Christians are joy-full. There are joy-less Christians and they show it in the way they talk and in their attitude. Their joy is turned off. It happens! I know because it has happened to me. But please don’t keep your joy turned off for too long. You have to turn it back on ASAP to keep your joy alive. Life is just too short to live a joy-less life.
I know what you’re thinking… you don’t know what I’m going through. And you’re right, I don’t know but God knows. I don’t know the specifics but I do know that you’re going through a rough, tough, hard, difficult and challenging time. I do know that every day all day things pop-up at home, work, school that are unpleasant, annoying, disturbing, disappointing, discouraging, uncomfortable, overwhelming, stressful, depressing, frustrating, etc.. This is exactly when you need your joy alive. If your joy is turned off, this is the time to turn it on, turn it up and keep it on.
Turn on YOUR JOY with Music: Center of My Joy [Live]
Turn on your joy! Make the decision that no matter your circumstances, you will keep joy alive. It’s a choice you have to make. A few years ago I decided to keep my joy alive. Joy helped me get through the darkest time in my life. That’s why every morning I ask God to fill me up with the Fruit of the Spirit. I want the Spirit to lead my words, attitude, actions, interactions and reactions. Oh yes! I want the Holy Spirit to keep my joy alive! God knows I need a daily refill to get me through the day. This is how I keep my joy alive. How do you keep your joy alive when the going gets tough?
Keep YOUR JOY alive!
“… Don’t feel dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10 NLT
“I am overwhelmed with joy in the Lord my God! For he has dressed me with the clothing of salvation and draped me in a robe of righteousness…” Psalm 61:10 NLT
“This is the day the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118:24 NLT
“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” Romans 8:28 NLT
“Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying.” Romans 12:12 NLT
“I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13 NLT
“But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things.” Galatians 5:22-23 NLT
“Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again – rejoice! Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon.” Philippians 4:4 NLT
“Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.” James 1:2-4 NLT
“But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.” 1 John 4:4 NLT
From Deb’s to yours…
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