How To Find Joy In A Difficult World

You would be forgiven for thinking that we live in a world where joy is difficult to find. Injustice and inequality are pervasive all around us. Anxiety and depression have reached epidemic levels. And everything is expensive, every time. (An encouraging and upbeat way to start a blog.)

But I begin here for one reason: to draw our attention, as Christians, to a challenging tension found throughout the Bible. Even in difficult times, we are called to be a people of joy. What does that mean?

Rejoice in the Lord always” Philippians 4:4 says. Joy is one fruit of the Holy Spirit of God, says Galatians 5:22. Psalm 118 (NKJV) says: Let us rejoice and be glad in the day the Lord made. There is evidence everywhere in the Bible that joy must be a defining characteristic of a follower of Jesus. It sounds great, but it can feel like a tough question.

Whether you have joy or you feel like your joy has been stolen from you, here are three reflective thoughts to help you find and share true joy in the midst of a difficult world.

Kristopher Roller’s photo on Unsplash

We must relearn what (and what is not) joy.

To find joy in life is often difficult, we need to know what we are looking for. The words of Jesus are a good place to start.

In John 15, Jesus said this: “Just as the Father has loved Me, so I love you. Now still in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will be in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete.” John 15:9-11

Here, Jesus explicitly tells us what joy is and how to experience it. As Christians, we certainly want the joy of Jesus to dwell in us and our joy to be complete. While there’s a lot we could go into on this topic, a few thoughts stand out:

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Happiness Is Knowing I’m Loved

Joy comes from knowing that we belong to Christ and that He loves us. The good news of the Gospel message is the unchanging foundation of our joy. Just as the Father loved Jesus, so he has loved you. You are His beloved child and nothing on this planet can change that. Be courageous, for He has conquered the world. This safety is the foundation of your joy.

Joy Is Living In God’s Presence

Spending time with Jesus is the fastest way to gain His joy. When we keep His commandments, following in His footsteps, we are in His love. As we live our lives in His presence, we can experience the supernatural joy He gives us – a joy beyond our understanding.

Joy is found in the presence of God, not in our circumstances. As we draw closer to Him, we will experience that gift for ourselves.

Joy is FEMALENo ‘Pretend’ to be happy

The words of Christ above also help us to realize what true joy is. Not. As a Christian, you don’t always have to pretend that everything is great. That’s not real or honest.

Joy is not a superficial emotion that we use to try to deny the reality of our lives. Rather, it is born of a profound realization that we are children of God and that our chaotic lives are held so tightly in the hands of the loving Savior we hold dear. can be trusted.

To find joy as a Christian, you need to draw close to the One who loves you deeply. The closer you are to Christ, the more joy will be found. Draw near today.

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Jesus’ definition of joy can reframe our Csituation

If joy is living in Christ and following His way, then we can find that joy anywhere. Jesus spoke the words we are looking at in John 15 the night before He went to the cross. I can’t imagine Jesus feeling particularly ‘joyed’ about the pain that is coming to Him, but He can nonetheless express unyielding joy because He knows what true joy looks like. any.

Joy is found in putting our worldly circumstances into a broader eternal perspective. Jesus found joy in doing God’s will and knowing that He was obeying His heavenly Father. And just as Jesus took pleasure in obeying His Father even in the face of opposition, so we can find joy in our trying situations when we listen to God’s voice and obey His commands.

We must rearrange our circumstances in the light of Jesus. Romans 12:12 tells us to “rejoice” in hope“. If your circumstances don’t give you any immediate reason to rejoice, know that, in Christ, you have another direction to look: forward. You have a hope for the future.

Once we understand Jesus’ definition of joy, we can begin to turn the tide in our situation. Even as we walk through the valley of the shadow of death, we can rest assured that God is with us.

Choose to be happy today, no matter what you are facing. Christ is with you.

We Must Take Back Our Joy That Is Ours In Jesus Christ

If the joy of Christ dwells in us, and the presence of God is the solid foundation of our joy, we cannot let the enemy take away our joy. It’s not his to take. As Christians, the time has come to shine the light of Christ into this dark world by boldly reclaiming our joy in Jesus. Remember the powerful words of Nehemiah 8:10: “God’s joy is your strength“.

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If you’re struggling to have joy at the moment, there are a few things you can do to help you regain joy in your life:

• contact a friend and ask for help. We can easily discover it in the community as we encourage each other.

• do not overcome difficulties alone. Intentionally seeking time with Jesus. Listen to a meditation on Glorify.

• do a research on fun. If Christ is the source of joy, then His word is a shining arrow that directs us to Him.

• Finally, decide to actively seek and choose joy. Find an activity that energizes you. Celebrate the little things in life. Be grateful for what you have.

I pray that you will find God’s supernatural joy today in whatever you are facing.

Frank Mckenna’s photo on Unsplash

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