Life is so full of joy, dear God, in the laughter of children, the smiles of strangers and the beautiful colors of flowers.  Joy can be found anywhere and yet so often we can only see the darkness of despair.  Sometimes the frowns on our faces seem to be there all day and we don’t want to look around and see the joy that surrounds us.

The Bible talks a lot about joy, particularly when we are following the way of life that Jesus wants us to follow.  We need to transfer the joy that Paul talks about for instance and carry it into our everyday workplaces and homes.  Here is what he says:

Philippians 1:24-26
But it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body. Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, so that through my being with you again your joy in Christ Jesus will overflow on account of me.

Do we hang in there when things get tough?  Do our bad moods or our despair transfer onto others that we meet each day?  Our promise to ourselves each morning should be that we will take joy with us and so our joy will overflow and touch all we meet.  Now I do not mean to go around with a silly grin pasted to our faces, but just have that inner joy that Paul and others speak of and believe me it will embrace all those around.

Read these passages that mention joy and take on the joy they are speaking about and I’m sure your life, and the lives of those around you, will change.

1 Thessalonians 2:19-20
For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you? Indeed, you are our glory and joy.

Galatians 5:22-23
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”

Prayer: Loving Jesus, when we follow your way and love others we become animated and alive and our joy radiates from us.  We are filled with a wonderful joy and expectation which brings hope, and yet often we spend so much time living a way that is comfortable and safe that we lose our animation.  We do not want to be flat and one dimensional.  Please help us to realize our full potential so that our hearts can dance with joy. Amen.

by Terry Stead
Used by Permission

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