JOY – Today you guys have me to deal with! 😀
Do I need an intro for myself? Hehehe … Y’all know me (at least to an extent) and love me (I hope 😦 at least a lil’)! And that’s all the intro I’ll do … Enjoy 🙂
You already know I’m talking about JOY! Growing up JOY was defined as Jesus first, Yourself last, Others in between. I was vehemently against this definition – I mean how do you put others first all the time and expect to be happy! That’s the main problem most of us have – What’s the difference between being happy and being joyful?
Happiness is a feeling. You can’t help it. It is determined by the environment and circumstances. Joy on the other hand is there no matter what happens. Joy is a byproduct, an additional benefit, not the end in itself. It is this feeling of contentment despite what life throws at you. It is closely entwined with peace. Like peace of yesterday, you have to be in Christ to experience true joy and in its fullness. It flows into and grows within the person whose life and energies are not focused merely on being joyful!
You don’t chase joy. It is something that you either possess or don’t. If you’re chasing it, then you don’t have it. Joy is not the product of the natural mind but the product of the Holy Spirit. As it is not a product of the natural mind, then looking for it outside the guidance of the Holy Spirit will produce poor counterfeits, if at all any, of what God is and desires to be in us.
Back to my elementary definition. We’ve covered ‘Jesus first’.Joy also involves selflessness. You cannot truly be joyful if you are selfish. One thing I learnt today is that the more you hoard, the worse you stink. Let me explain – A lagoon may stink because it gets water from all sources including gutters that overflow but as it doesn’t give any out, the debris accumulates and it stinks. Be giving and loving and selfless and joy will flow. Ever heard the saying that ‘If you want to feel better about something, help someone.’, paraphrased of course! That covers ‘Others in between‘. Ultimately you have to be in the equation. I mean who’s gonna experience the joy?
This is a lil’ off the top of my head but remember joy’s a decision. You have to choose to remain joyful!
Okay that’s it. You read my thoughts all through so I’ll just summarize all I’ve said:
J – Jesus first
O – Others in between
Y – Yourself last
Have a great week!