Phil Fischer with Jesus Lives – A Devotion on “Joy”
The Bible teaches us that the source of all joy is JESUS. It’s not momentary or based on circumstances. Christian joy is a heartfelt gratitude of God’s love, mercy and grace.
Joy supernaturally sustains our souls in seasons of heartache, injustice, and sorrow.
“Be full of joy all the time. Never stop praying. In everything give thanks. This is what God wants you to do because of Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NLV)
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.” James 1:2-3 (NIV)
There is a difference between biblical joy and happiness. Happiness is more of a state of mind. Happiness is attached to the blessings in our lives while joy is emotionally rooted in our faith in Christ. Biblical joy is choosing to respond to external circumstances with inner contentment and satisfaction because we know that God will use these experiences to accomplish His work in and through our lives,” writes Mel Walker for Christinaity.com.
“The Lord gives His people perpetual joy when they walk in obedience to Him.” Dwight L. Moody
The Bible speaks of sacrifices of joy. Blueletterbible.org states that the sacrifice mentioned in Psalm 27:6 is not only a thank-offering but a sacrifice of strife and righteousness. When somebody is in pain, maybe missing a deceased love one, suffering from an injustice, dealing with a health problem, (or any other kind of trial) but chooses to lift their voice in praise, God is pleased. We may not feel like singing or praising God, but when we move through our painful situations and acknowledge God as good and always worthy of our praises, we are offering sacrifices of joy.
“And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me; Therefore, I will offer sacrifices of joy in His tabernacle; I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the Lord.” Psalm 27:6 (NKJV)
King David understood and offered many sacrifices of praise. He grasped the power, sovereignty, wisdom, righteousness, victory, glory, and greatness of God. He ADORED his Creator. Despite his faults, David is described as a man after God’s own heart ( Acts 13:22). He cared about the things God cared about. David was so impressed by God’s character and influenced by His attributes he was compelled to bless Him. David wrote over half of the Psalms. The Psalms are hymns of praise and prayers to the Almighty God.
King David was in a very inhospitable environment with disastrous circumstances beyond his control when he composed Psalm 63. His son, Prince Absalom, instigated a revolt against him so King David fled eastward from Jerusalem through the Judean Desert to the friendlier region of Gilead on the other side of the Jordan River (2 Sam. 17:24). Through very difficult circumstances and a heart-crushing betrayal, King David continued to praise and worship God.
“O God, You are my God; Early will I seek You; My soul thirsts for You; My flesh longs for You in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water. So, I have looked for You in the sanctuary, to see Your power and Your glory. Because Your lovingkindness is better than life,
My lips shall praise You. Thus I will bless You while I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name.” Psalm 63:1-4 (NKJV)
The Joy of the Lord is our strength. This supernatural joy will draw unbelievers to you. As the salt of the earth and a light in this world, I pray that the joy in knowing your citizenship is in heaven illuminates you. Choosing joy as this world gets darker will certainly be a sacrifice of praise. Will you join me in this offering?
“Then he said to them, ‘Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.’” Nehemiah 8:10 (NKJV)