Speak the Truth:
Talk the Talk:
When you look up the word choose in the English dictionary, it says… To select from a number of possible alternatives; decide on and pick out. One of the greatest choices we get to experience as believers is whether or not to be joyful. When we invite Christ to rule over our lives, He promises to fill us with joy. Don’t hear me wrong… He does not promise us a perfect life absent of obstacles or struggles; that is not what is meant. It means no matter what happens, He is with us, He is in complete control, and we can rest in the fact that everything happens for a purpose. Nothing takes Him by surprise. We know that we can trust Him completely. Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” That is an awesome promise.
So He fills us with Joy and it is readily available to us; we just have to choose it. One other major distinction that I think is important to make before we go any further is to point out the difference between Joy and Happiness. Just because we have Joy, doesn’t necessarily mean we are happy all the time. They are 2 separate things. Our Joy comes from deep within, and can be found even in some of the saddest and most trying of moments. Our joy is not determined by our circumstances. According to gotquestions.org, the book of Philippians is a great study in the difference between joy and happiness.( Let me encourage you to delve a little deeper. http://www.gotquestions.org/joy-happiness.html#ixzz3DQ2vv2Ne)
Now that we understand that Joy comes from Christ, here are some ways I can choose joy in my daily life….
1. When my kids spend 15 minutes brushing their teeth and leave the bathroom with water all over the counter, I can choose JOY because my kids are able to brush their teeth with running water. (Phil 4:19)
2. When money gets financially tight, and there are unexpected bills, I can choose JOY because my Savior always provides. (Matthew 6:26)
3. When a family member or friend breaks a promise or hurts your/my feelings, I can choose JOY because Jesus is my best friend and promises to never leave me or forsake me. (Heb 13:5) (Prov 18:24)
4. When someone becomes sick or a loved one dies, I can choose JOY because the Lord sustains us and gives us Peace. (Psalm 41:3)(Psalm 147:3)
Walk the Walk:
There are so many other examples that I could use to illustrate how to choose joy because the Bible is full of promises of Christ’s love for us. Take some time and try to think of different examples in your life, times when you feel anxious or sad and look up verses that will help you find joy in those circumstances. You could probably use some of the same verses I have referenced above. WE HAVE A CHOICE. We can choose to focus on being depressed, sad, and lonely, or we can keep our eyes focused on Jesus, and let his Joy & Hope overflow in our hearts. When we choose joy, others will notice a difference in us. That is what makes us different from the rest of the world. How can you be so joyful when you are going through so much? It’s because I know Jesus reigns.