“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance” (James 1:2-3, NIV).
Today’s post is all about joy, one of the fruits of the Spirit as listed in the Bible book of Galatians. Although it’s often confused with happiness, joy runs much deeper. Joy is spiritual, while happiness tends to be worldly. Joy is lasting. Happiness is fleeting.
Perhaps most importantly, joy is independent of circumstance. A cancer patient can be joyful despite his dire diagnosis. A financially-strapped individual can be joy-filled even upon losing a job. While individuals like these may find happiness difficult in such challenging circumstances, they can still experience joy. This is because joy comes from God. It is a fruit of the Spirit, which grows wildly even in the thorniest of situations.
My challenge for us today is that we would redirect our focus from the things that make us temporarily happy to the God who brings us everlasting joy. That’s my prayer for us as well. Next time we’ll talk about the Spirit fruit of love. Until then, walk in joy!