I had my own definition of joy. Apparently God wasn’t interested.
As it turns out – He was right – go figure.
Mine would have depended on a lot of things lining up correctly. It would have left out the days that included illness, arguments, anger, lack of money, friends irritating me, me irritating friends, death, sorrow, bad weather, unmet expectations, failure, my weight being up, my doctor telling me to get my weight down, scary things, disappointment, depression … wow I better get to the point – I could go on forever.
And let’s face it – I’m not sure my definition for joy would have left me a single day.
Let’s go to the fruit that Jesus gave us without reservation and in abundance.
JOHN 15:11 –“I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.”
If we read the encircling verses – it’s all about love and the relationship … and then the lasting fruit that we will bear – joy that is complete.
Grief turns to joy (John16: 20), no one can take our joy (John 16: 22), we are filled with joy in His presence (Psalm 16:11), we are filled with joy because of belief in God (Acts16: 34), joy is given by the Holy Spirit (I Thessalonians1:6) … well you get the drift.
Joy is everywhere in the Word and in the presence of Jesus.
Joy is the presence of Jesus … not the absence of hurt, suffering, trials or anything else on OUR list.
Joy is the presence of Jesus … not the presence of health, friends, money or anything else on OUR list.
It is that simple. Fruit that we bear as we abide in a relationship with Jesus. JOY!!