The true source of joy
God uses earthly things to fill us with joy. Job received double his earthly riches among other things. But God said His joy is not dependent on material things or human relationships. Proverbs says, better the little of the righteous than the abundance of the wicked. Although a man may long for intimacy with a woman, or a woman may long to have children, the Lord says He can make the barren woman rejoice more than her who has children.¹ And Paul was so happy being single that he wished all men had the gift to be single like himself.²God’s Joy is not dependent on anything, so circumstances should not cause us to doubt the return of joy in our life. God may allow us to lose hope, of ever being filled with joy again, if we are looking at our circumstances, but if we cry out to God and trust in His promises and his strength… we can be sure of His help and the return of his joy, no matter the circumstances.³
I learned this truth firsthand. I have a gift of singing, but my gift is dependent on how well I am feeling and if I have practiced, because the vocal cords are muscles. But God doesn’t always give me a healthy body, and because of my obedience to do whatever he puts on my heart, sometimes I don’t have time to practice enough to hit the notes that make my heart sing for joy.
One night as I walked around the block and sang, my heart was overflowing with joy, but the very next day, I could not find Joy in the same words of the song. The words were: “my heart, it burns, for you” and “it may feel like I’m surrounded, but I’m surrounded by you” I hadn’t sung the words since that incident. I began to sing that song again today, and my heart was filled with joy again. God opened my eyes to see that beyond the physical ability to sing a perfect note, he is the one who fills our heart with Joy. I also remember a time when I was in such a state of mind, that I could not sing, because I would immediately cry, due to my love and thankfulness towards God. But I could sing in my mind, and the joy God granted me as I mouthed the words in my head, outweighed any physical singing I can remember. I long for those times when my heart is overwhelmed with love, Joy and thankfulness towards God. But I know his will is best and he said there are different seasons in our life, and there is a time and place for everything.⁴ God promised I will taste again of the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.⁵
① Psalms 113:9 ② 1 Corinthians 7:7 ③ 1 Peter 5:10 ④ Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 ⑤ Psalms 27:13
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