JOURNEY TO JOYLAND

 

The Joy of the Lord is our strength. (Nehemiah 8:9)

Psalms 51

 

Galatians 5: 14. 

 22.  But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,  23.  Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

 24.  And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.   25.  If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.


Joy is attained by rejoicing in Jesus; being willingness to make Him glad.

Philippians 4: 4.  Says, Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. 

"Do you have that joy?" It’s obvious that many people don’t. And you’ve been around them, haven’t you? They’re grumps, they’re gripers, they’re very negative about virtually everything that happens in life, complaining almost all the time. As a result, they just aren’t much fun to be around and they can even pull you down. 

Let me give you a definition of "joy." "Joy is an evidence of the presence of God in your life." If God is in your life then this fruit of the Spirit “Joy” will be obvious in your life.

Now listen my dear saints of God, don’t mistake happiness for joy. It’s easy to do that. The Bible mentions "joy" or "rejoicing" 330 times. But it only mentions "happiness" 26 times. Happiness depends upon what happens to you. So if all the circumstances are right, then you can be happy. But joy comes from inside and shows up on the outside and spills over.  Your cup runneth over, because of His goodness and mercy that follow you.  Glory to His name!

Philippians 4: 4.  Says, Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. 

Joy is found in Jesus!

1 John 4: 4.  Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

 

So don’t let the devil ride in your life, because he will want to drive.  Don’t let the devil steal your “JOY.” 


                                 FOUR ENEMIES OF JOY

 WORRY:   And if you just looked at circumstances you would think that we would be the happiest people in the world because we’re richer than any other generation, & our quality of life is better than ever before. We ought to be extremely happy. We’re not, but we ought to be.

 

UNRESOLVED GUILT:  A lot of people are unable to accept themselves or to accept the forgiveness God offers.

You may have come through a divorce and you feel that you’re inferior in the sight of God. Or you may have had a brush with the law and you feel that you’re not welcome in God’s house. Or that people would not understand if they knew the secrets of your life or even your sexual orientation.

David was the same way in the O.T. He had committed adultery, & he felt enormous guilt over it. He wrestled with the guilt and finally came to God in Psalms 51:12 and prayed, "Restore to me the joy of your salvation..."

 

WOUNDED EGO:  Sometimes people offend us and our feelings are hurt.We feel unloved, unneeded and left out.

UNPLEASANT CIRCUMSTANCES:   Problems come to us all. You may lose your job and have money problems. Your children may disappoint you. You may be experiencing heartaches and setbacks of all kind. Your health may even be breaking down. Problems do come to us all.

But I bring you good news today.  Even though the devil is taunting you and trying to steal your “Joy in Jesus”  God wants to give you more joy.  God wants to not only change that picture, but wants to change your disposition and position in Him.  He wants in 2010 to re-create you and MAKE YOU BRAND NEW CHRIST.

 

1 Peter 4: 12.  Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:

 13.  But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.

 14.  If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.


PAUL ADMONIHES US TO BE LIKE JESUS IN THE MIDST OF TROUBLE.

Hebrews 12

 Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, “WITH ALL JOY”

 2.  Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.   3.  For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.

 4.  Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.

The cross was an object of joy for Jesus because He didn’t do it for Himself. He did it for us. He went to the cross for you and me.

 

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? “AND STILL OUR JOY” shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.

Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.

For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,

Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.  Romans 8: 35-39

 

Joy renews and energizes and charges our spiritual batteries for the service of the Lord.  Do you have the Joy of the Lord? 

 

 

 

Rev. Sylvester Williams, Jr., ICU Ministries, Inc., January 24, 2010