Mark Affleck

My Tears of PAIN Started a Rain of JOY

July 30, 2021
Spiritual Growth

Everyone wants to experience the spine-tingling and euphoric RAIN OF JOY in their life. Sounds easy, right? So what’s the problem? Why does the world seem, largely, joyless and incapable of finding its elusive destination? And why in the world do so many Christians struggle mightily to understand the meaning of joy and search unsuccessfully for the pathway to its well of wonder?
The answers to those questions skip in on two beats—PERSPECTIVE and EXPECTATION.
What we do know is that living with joy is one of GOD’S PROMISES and, with some discipline and prayer, an achievable state we should all be pursuing with steadfast intent.
Unwrapping GOD’S JOY PROMISE starts with its Biblical basis and spiritual springboard:
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” Philippians 4:4
I love this verse because it has the Apostle Paul REPEATING HIMSELF with his instruction to REJOICE in the Lord. Why the double-barrel shot? Because he KNEW about its difficulty. And his message packs extra punch since it emanated from a desolate and dusty prison cell in Philippi.  
If you are ready today to activate or energize GOD’S JOY PROMISE in your faith walk, let’s start by crushing these two JOY MYTHS:
We can easily fall into the trap of only experiencing what we think is joy when we inject our life with some exotic recipe of “joy juice.” Unlike feelings of happiness that come in and out of our life, fruit-of-the-spirit joy has nothing to do with things going “good or bad.” It is a joy that comes as a gift from the Holy Spirit. It transcends any and all circumstances. It is not found in joy juice.

Joy in God is not a switch we flip to the on position at our salvation. Joy in Christ is a lifelong pursuit and discipline. We love to look at joy through the lens of success and pleasure and comfort. But if God’s joy only shows up on our “best days,” we are not feasting on authentic, God-delivered JOY.

I want to develop the joy that only comes from GOD by continually praying for HIS protection and guidance. I want to always remember that his joy is a gift and not an emotion I could ever produce on my own. I want God’s strength to hold tightly onto the joy that comes from having an intimate relationship with him.
“These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.” John 15:9-11
Are you experiencing the kind of joy Jesus gives us naturally and consistently, or do you require an injection of “joy juice” that delivers good news to make your day?
Joy is a choice. Will you choose it?

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