The second fruit of the Holy Spirit found in Galatians 5:22-23 is my favorite, joy!
Nehemiah 8:10 says, “Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”
Romans 12:12 says, “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction and faithful in prayer.”
Paul was writing to the Galatians, admonishing them to bear the fruit of the Holy Spirit so they would abstain from sin. These are fruits all Christians should bear.
Joy! That word elicits excitement and gladness, doesn’t it? Except…when it doesn’t.
When my joy is diminishing, I try to remember all the blessings I have to be thankful for. I have found that when I am busy counting my blessings, there is no time to be depressed. Even keeping a “Thankful Journal” can be very useful in redirecting our thoughts.
What are we focusing on? If our focus is on ourselves, our joy walk can stumble into issues. If our focus is on God and His Word, we will find joy and strength for our journey.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that ye may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” ~ Romans 15:13
Joy comes when we are aligning ourselves with God’s Word, living daily for Him and His purposes and learning to trust Him more. Joy is not self serving. It cannot come from within our sinful nature. It cannot be granted from another. Of course, people can give us joy. But the kind of lasting joy that brings peace and balance to our lives, comes from God alone. The joy that is our strength in troubled times that will see us through until we reach heaven’s shores…That joy comes from God Almighty and no one else.
I pray that you find the joy of the Lord in your heart today. And if you don’t know Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, I pray that you will say this prayer:
“Dear God, please forgive me of my sins. I turn from them today and desire to live for you from here on out. I believe that you raised Jesus from the dead and that you took my place on the cross. Help me to live for you. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”