Joy is defined as a feeling of great pleasure and happiness but I find this definition to be problematic and highly unrealistic. If joy is really the prospect of feeling good all the time, why are we miserable so often? Why are we discouraged so often? Why is it that one bad thing happens and our happiness is all but gone? Even for those who are naturally optimistic and peppy, it is impossible to feel good all of the time. I’d like to believe that:
Joy is the assurance that God is in control of every aspect of my existence and that surely his goodness and unfailing love for me will pursue me all the days of my life.
You’ll find nothing in that definition about happy feelings, as we all know, happiness is fleeting and temporary. All too often we search for happiness in possession and prestige. We think we are happy if we get what we want. We pursue happiness in temporal fulfillment of personal desires. Real joy can only be found in the presence of God.
God is a God of joy; we need only to seek him in order to truly experience the joy he brings into our lives. He is a wellspring of true joy. The more you love him, walk with him, and become like him, the greater your joy. Some of us are too busy trying to do what God ought to be doing for us that we have never entered into his ‘resting place’ and are constantly frustrated and tired of life – we are all guilty of this at one point or another. With Jesus in our heart, it should follow that we are not as miserable as often as we are.