Here is a post that I put on Facebook this morning:
“With Christ, we have a life filled with joy that randomly encounters dark storms. Without Christ, we have a life of dark storms that randomly encounters joy.”
I’m grateful for receiving this insight from God during my devotional reading today. I am so blessed to have the privilege of experiencing joy that is not contingent upon circumstances.
You see, joy is the fruit of strength and direction and confidence for the inner person.
In contrast, happiness is the contingent result of pleasing circumstances that satisfy the outer person, things such as nice clothes, nice food, nice housing, nice body shape, nice job, etc.
Faith is not measured by happiness.
It is measured by joy.
If our joy is great when externalities stink, our faith is strong.
The reverse is true, of course.
Is your life goal one of seeking joy? Or is it really one of seeking happiness?
Happiness depends on circumstances.
Happiness is about the “now.”
Joy depends on promises.
Joy is about the future.
This is the obvious point of Psalm 119:143.
“As pressure and stress bear down on me, I find joy in your commands.”
Like you, I face a lot of pressures and stresses. I’m in an intense season of such just now.
Yet, I’m not depressed. I’m not freaking out. I still breathe slowly and deeply.
Is this because I know a big check is in the mail? Is this because I’ve got a dream vacation coming up? Is this because I have many friends who want me to come over to their houses to hang out and eat tasty food?
No, no and no.
I have joy in this season because I know that obeying God’s Word assures me of an eternal life apart from pressure and stress.
I have joy because of what’s ahead rather than happiness because of what’s in the present.
I pray that this is your view, too.
As always, I love you