"But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!" Galations 5:22-23
Joy. How can that not make you smile to just think about that. There are so many verses in the Bible that talk about joy, it's almost hard to just pick a couple. Of all of the fruits of the spirit, I think I am most grateful for the gift of joy. Being able to have joy in all situations is such a blessing. No matter how bad life may get, we can always find joy in knowing that Jesus died for our sins, and that when this life is at its end, we get to spend all eternity in the presence of Our Lord. That is worthy of joy. Even Job found joy- he literally had nothing else, not even his health, yet he found Joy in the Lord.
"Then I would still have this consolation-- my joy in unrelenting pain-- that I had not denied the words of the Holy One. " Job 6:10
"He prays to God and finds favor with him, he sees God's face and shouts for joy; he is restored by God to his righteous state." Job 33:26
The Psalms are also full of examples of Joy.
"You have made 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 Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song." Psalm 28:7
"Then will I go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and my delight. I will praise you with the harp, O God, my God." Psalm 43:4
Andy and I have found a wonderful place of joy. It's amazing to us that in the midst of this time of uncertainty that we can still be certain of God's love and provision for us. And it gives us even more joy to know that we are setting a huge example for other people. It is truly vexing to some of those we talk to that we are placing complete trust in God right now. He is providing, and will continue to do so. And when things are back to normal, what a testimony we will have! We can share the joy of the Lord with others who may experience exactly what we are experiencing. Joy is such a precious thing to be able to have. And as a parent, that trickles down. Abigail and Zander see the happiness and joy that Andy and I have, and in turn, they are happy themselves. In the last two months we have all spent more time together doing silly things. Whether that be playing in the living room, or sitting around the table playing games, it's priceless. While we may not have the material things that the world says will give us joy, we have our God. And he fills us to bursting each and every day with his Joy.
I thank God today for his joy, and I pray that this joy we have found will be contagious to everyone who comes in contact with us.