Joy. It's one of the Fruits of the Spirit. It's what Psalm 126 is all about. It's what the authors of Scripture repeatedly alludes to.
Yet, joy seems to be missing in society and, if we're honest, in many lives of believers in churches across America. Why is this?
Think about all the ways we PURSUE joy. We pay someone to tell us jokes or to perform for us. We purchase entertainment. We shop nonstop. We do what we can to eliminate disappointment, pain, insecurity, and suffering. We chase paychecks. We hope that other people will somehow fulfill us whether it's in friendships, likes on social media, relationships, or promotions. We develop hobbies. The list goes on, yet, what's interesting is that, in all these pursuits in an effort to somehow obtain joy in our lives, we're left empty, alone, fragile, disappointed, or joyless just moments later or maybe hours or days later.
We're back at it again. Little things bring us joy and then we're wanting more. Could it be that we're asking created things (people and objects) to do for us what ONLY the Creator can do for us?
Think of Psalm 126. The author certainly knew about suffering from history, yet, the author of this Psalm says, "Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy." That's a statement being said in the midst of suffering, loneliness, and disappointment. How?
Perhaps our joy ought to be received from God instead of being 'commanded, purchased, or arranged' by us, as Eugene Peterson would say. Perhaps, in his words again, 'joy is what God GIVES, not what we WORK up. What if joy, as Christians, is actually found in the midst of circumstances that society says that there's no way that joy could ever be found in?
Our quest to find joy (one that lasts) in anything or anyone else outside of the certainty of God and His promises, is futile and fleeting and will ALWAYS leave us empty. There's nothing inherently wrong with finding joy in the 'everyday things'. It's when we pursue it as SURPREME joy and when we ask of created things (people and possessions) to somehow fulfill us that we are left tragically disappointed.
#joy #f4f #l4f #follow4follow #followme #foryou