“But the fruit of the Spirit is love,
gentleness, goodness, faith,
against such there is no law.”
Isn’t it interesting that joy is listed second, following love, in the list of the Fruit of the Spirit found in Galatians? In my personal experience, joy is found where love resides. In fact, I find it incredibly difficult to find a truly joyful life where love is absent. I’m not alone it seems. Most people usually desire heartfelt love and joy. Yet, many accept living without them because they don’t know where they come from or how to obtain them. We often seek for it in people, professions, places, pleasures, products, projects and property. Sometimes, a sense of joy can be found in these relationships and resources. However, it can also be shallow or short lived. When God’s ways are not involved in our lives, pursuing joy in our own ways is futile. Since joy and rejoicing are mentioned numerous times in God’s Word, let’s take a minute to consider how to reap long-lasting joy before more unnecessary efforts are spent on fruitless endeavors.
The word “joy” that is found in many New Testament references is defined in the Greek as basically:
- Calm Delight
This simple and beautiful joy is a fruit of God’s Spirit. It’s the joy that He longs for us to reap, experience, and retain. That is why he provides ways for us to continually harvest it in our lives. If we are to keep this fruitfulness going and growing, there are some specific instructions and behaviors God requires us to follow and do.
That We Might Find God’s Joy
“But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice:
let them ever shout for joy,
because thou defendest them:
let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee.
For thou, LORD, wilt bless the righteous;
with favour wilt thou compass him as with a shield.”
In this passage, we see that we reap Godly joy by:
- Putting our trust in the Lord
- Loving the name of the Lord
- Living righteously before the Lord
That God’s Joy Might Remain in Us
“If ye keep my commandments,
ye shall abide in my love;
even as I have kept my Father’s commandments,
and abide in his love.
These things have I spoken unto you,
that my joy might remain in you,
and that your joy might be full.”
God says in His Word that if we keep His commandments, we will abide in His love. Our obedience ensures that His joy might remain in us and be full. What a great promise and motivation to follow His commands.
That Our Joy Might Be Full
“Thou wilt shew me the path of life:
in thy presence is fullness of joy;
at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.”
It’s amazing to know that God can give us joy in the middle of our storms, struggles and sorrow. I know, because I’ve experienced it. I can’t explain the feeling of finding joy in the middle of pain and problems. When the world seems to be crashing in around us, God’s joy brings tender comfort only He can provide. I’m learning to cherish this joyful harvest and the cheerfulness it encourages each day.
“They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.” Psalm 126:5
Bring It Home
Are you seeing God’s joy budding and growing in your garden?
Praying for you as we grow together,