Scriptures: Galatians 5:22, John 16:16-22, 15:10-11, James 1:2, Hebrews 12:2, Philippians 4:4, Zephaniah 3:17, 1 Thessalonians 5:16
One of the biggest mysteries of our faith is "joyless Christianity". If you think about the Christians that you know and the Christians that you hang around with would you honestly say that you see a lot of joy in their life? Even in difficult times, when life isn't going well, you may even result the fact that we are called to be joyful. Nobody is immune to bad days or bad news. The question is not if those days will come, but rather, how will we respond.
Joyfulness is not the same as happiness. Being full of joy and being happy are two different things. Happiness is external, based on circumstance, while joy is internal, depending on Christ. How do you become joyful and stay joyful? In this message, Dr. Merritt explores the fruit of joy in the life of the believer. Learn how to be joyful on the inside, even if everything is falling apart on the outside.
"There is only one way that you can maintain joy when those tough, hard, gut-wrenching times come into your life and that is when you make up your mind to focus on God rather than the trouble. There are all kinds of joy stealers out there. If you ever want to be joyful like God wants you to be you’ve got to learn how to deal with them. One joy stealer is undeserved guilt. That sneaky thief will slide into your thoughts and mind and remind you of something from the past that you did a long time ago. Another joy stealer is fear of the circumstance that you are in right now wondering how you are going to get out of it. Another joy stealer is worry--being anxious over what might happen tomorrow or the next day." --Dr. Merritt
Keywords: Fruit of the Spirit, tasty, joy, happy, happiness, unhappy, Dennis Prager, mercy, internal, understand, past, forgiven, future, guaranteed, furnace, desire, choose, enjoy, relationship, joyful, Joni Erickson Tada, quadriplegic, determine, rejoice
Pastors Edge provides Bible preachers and teachers with ready-to-use resources and materials based on the preaching of Dr. James Merritt, Senior Pastor at Cross Pointe Church in Duluth, GA and host of the international broadcast ministry Touching Lives.