Monday, January 4, 2016

A Joyful Heart

One of my favorite words is  joy. I even gave my first daughter the middle name Joy.

My Brooklyn Joy!

Studying what it looks like to have joy, I have discovered there is much more to this little word then we first give it credit for.

What is Joy really and what does it look like?

According to, the definition of joy is:

-a feeling of great happiness.
-a source or cause of great happiness: something or someone that gives joy to someone.
-success in doing, finding, or getting something

All these definitions are great and even believable. I agree joy can be a feeling of happiness and I sure feel happy when things are going well! I use the word when I am feeling happy, elated and joyful. But is that all? Is there more to this little three letter word?

Everyone loves to have joy in their life. But how do we get joy in our lives? 
Do we find it, earn it, buy it or are given it? 
The world would like you to think this is how you get joy. 

The bible tells us actual joy is from the Lord. This joy is unlike the joy of the world. It is not conditional. If we have the hope of Jesus Christ in us, then joy means so much more. We don't just have joy when things are going well and in times of gladness. We are to have the Joy of the Lord at all times in all circumstances. Joy is a gift for us that comes with allowing God into our lives as we change to be more like him.

Galatians 5:22-23a,  "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control."

When we accept Christ as Lord of our life we are accepting the Spirit. Having joy (along with the other qualities of the fruit of the Spirit) is an outward sign of the hope we have in Jesus. 

James 1:2-4 says, "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. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."

Not sure about you, but this joy must come from the Lord. There is no way my human self is going to respond with joy when I am in the middle of dealing with a screaming child in full on meltdown mode!
The world hits us hard with financial problems, job stress, life and relationship challenges. With the Spirit of God we have the ability to choose to plow through those life events with joy. Not only can we choose joy, but we have the ability to chose joy because we have the power of the Holy Spirit!
Wow! How amazing is that! 

Let's learn to allow God to help us choose joy. 

 So how exactly do we choose joy? I know I can start my day with good intentions. Then at 6:40am my kids burst through my bedroom door declaring it's time to start the day and eat breakfast of all things, joy isn't my first thought.

What I have found is start with prayer. I would say and quiet time with God, but remember what my alarm clock looks like!

This is just a few verses of what the bible says about having joy:

"But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy.
 Spread your protection over them, that those
 who love your name may rejoice in you." Psalm 5:11

"You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me 
with joy in your presence, with 
eternal pleasures at your right hand." Psalm 16:11

"The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. 
The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes."
 Psalm 19:8

"Through the victories you gave, his glory is great; you have
 bestowed on him splendor and majesty. Surely you have 
granted him unending blessings and made him glad 
with the joy of your presence." Psalm 21:5-6

"Splendor and majesty are before him; strength and joy are in his dwelling place."
 1 Chronicles 16:27

He will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy."
 Job 8:21

"Then that person can pray to God and find favor with him,
    they will see God’s face and shout for joy;
 he will restore them to full well-being." 
Job 33:26

"The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, 
and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him."
 Psalm 28:7

 Another way our family choses joy is with Young Living's Joy blend of essential oils!
This was the one oil in my starter kit that I wasn't convinced could do what it's name says. Sure, I believed these precious drops were fabulous for our immune system, respiratory systems and had great purifying properties. As far as oils for emotions…I wasn't sure.

This is what Young Living says about Joy…

"Joy is a delightful blend of Bergamot, Ylang Ylang, Geranium, Lemon, Coriander, Tangerine, Jasmine, Roman Chamomile, Palmarosa, and Rose essential oils that harmonize for a sweet, joyful aroma. When diffused, Joy creates a warm, comforting environment and inspires a romantic aromatic atmosphere. Wear Joy as a cologne or perfume to exude an alluring and irresistible fragrance that inspires romance and togetherness."

I've mentioned before I am a type A personality. That usually means I am tighter wound and stress a bit over things I can't control. Often to the point my body tightens up and I let it steal my joy.

I started using Joy over my heart every morning. I applied it to myself and my children and we would sing, "A joyful heart is good medicine and good medicine makes a joyful heart!" and "I've got the joy, joy, joy down in my heart…".

After a little bit of doing this, I forgot to start our day with Joy EO. About halfway through the morning I felt grumpier then normal. I was anxious and tense. My kids were cranky and unpleasant. Then it dawned on me! Oh man, we forgot to use Joy this morning!

Right there I realized there was something more to these oils then even I thought. With the blend of Joy,  my family felt more joy.

I love using Joy with positive affirmation and prayer. When using God's precious plants for our physical wellbeing, it just makes sense to ask God to bless it and use it.

Do you find it challenging to have joy? Are you like me, and struggle with the stress of this demanding world.
Please don't forget God's gift of Joy for you!  

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...