A Steady Outlook: Joy

July 25, 2020 by  
Filed under Daily Devotions, Life Topics

By Carin LeRoy –

What is the difference between happiness and joy? We think the meaning would be the same, but there is a distinction. Theologians define happiness as a temporal fleeting emotion, while joy is something that goes deeper. Many people can be tossed around in life depending on their circumstance–having gladness in the good times, but miserable in the difficult. Their emotions vacillate according to their situation.

Even though life brings its high and low moments, as believers we can have a steady grasp and outlook on life because we walk with God through them.

Scripture talks about joy. It is listed as a fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5, and we are admonished to “be joyful always” (I Thes. 5:16 NIV). When God tells us to have joy, it’s not perpetual happiness, because life isn’t always pleasant. It’s an inner steadiness and outlook on life no matter what circumstance comes our way. It’s a strength that comes from our knowledge of who we are in Christ and how He has blessed us. We have an awareness that God is in control and at work in our lives. Joy comes as we trust in God and His ability to accomplish His will for us.

Scripture gives many examples of what brings joy:
• God himself (Psalm 4:6,7)
• Our salvation (Isaiah 44:23)
• God’s unfailing love (Psalm 90:14)
• God’s presence (Psalm 21:6)
• Our eternal blessings (Proverbs 10:28)
• A timely word (Proverbs 15:23)
• A Cheerful look (Psalm 15:30)
• Music (Psalm 92:1-4)

These are only a few examples, but joy can be with us daily. Psalm 126: 5,6 says, ” Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy. He who goes out weeping carrying seeds to sow will return with songs of joy carrying sheaves with him.” Life’s tears will bring joy. Hard times are not happy times, but we get through them if we learn where the source of our joy comes. It is in God. Remember God’s blessings, trust in His sovereignty and know He is still at work in your life. Let’s have joy be the outlook of our soul.

QUOTE: We would never learn to be brave and patient, if there were only joy in the world – Helen Keller.

PRAYER: Lord thank You that you are a sovereign God and You are always working out Your purposes for my life. Thank You for the many ways You have blessed me. Give me a joyful heart that is willing to trust You through the good times and the bad.

About Carin LeRoy

Today's devotional is by Carin LeRoy, wife to Dale and mother of three grown children and one almost-grown teenager. She has been a missionary with Pioneers since 1982. Her passions are family, missions, piano, and writing to challenge others to live faithful lives for God.
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