But in all honesty, if I say that I am happy, does that mean I have joy? Does joy depend on our circumstances? Can you think of one moment this past week where it must have felt like hell breaking loose in your life, yet you said after all that you are going through, you still have joy? Can one be so full of joy it can be described as explosive? What did Jesus teach?
Here is an excerpt from Chris' article that seem to suggest some of the answers that we seek: "Everything is working out just as it should; and the sooner we all realize that, the sooner we understand that there is a Divinity watching over us, the better off we will all be, the more joy we will be surrounded by."
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A reasonable assumption of joy should therefore be this - whatever circumstance or situation that you find yourself in at the present moment, you have joy - joy in knowing that because God (Divinity) is watching over you, it's going to work out just as He planned it, and it's for your good.
You can safely concede that joy is a state of mind. It can either be a present or futuristic state of mind and that no matter what is going on, the more joy you will be filled with because you trust God (Divinity) that all things will work in your favor and for His glory.
So like my friend Chris, I can boldly say, it brings me joy knowing that my life is exactly where it is supposed to be, knowing that I am watched over by the Almighty God, that my life is mapped out just the way God orchestrated it to be.
"Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at his right hand there are pleasures for evermore." (Psalm 16:11)
"I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. IN any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret to facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me." (Philippians 4: 12-13)
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Your joy comes from trusting God to protect and to lead you. You have nothing then to worry about by choosing to surrender everything to Him.
In regards to what Jesus taught the disciples - He told them the way to abide in Him is to keep His commandments. The result..."that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full." (John 15:11b)
My final exaltation is this: In spite of all that I have been through this week past, I still have joy! I still have peace and I still have happiness!
So what about you today? What brings you joy? Is your joy full?