Are You Living With Joy?

Lorem ipsum dolor sit ametWe sometimes get swept up by life. It just happens. If you’re like me, you’re a perfectionist and a overachiever. You pretty much set yourself up for failure in some cases.  We get so busy busy busy. Our lives are so stressful and full of anxiety. And we never rest. We don’t stop to think, “Is this how I want to live my life, full of worry?” or “Am I focusing on what’s important?” Before we know it, months have passed and we’re worn out. We’re irritable. We haven’t read out Bible in who knows how long. We haven’t just really spent any any time with God. We’ve pushed Him to the side and placed other things (like schoolwork, writing, blogging, exercising, reading, etc.) as priority. We’ve put back burner.

You feel me? I know that I’m not the only one out there who does this. Recently, this has been my life. I haven’t started school, but I’ve filled my life with other things and haven’t just spent some time with God. I feel bad about it, but at the same time I just keep doing it. It’s a very stressful way to live. And I haven’t found really any joy at loving like that.

My pastor at church was talking about joy and I realized how fundamental it is to live fulfilling life.

Without joy, what is the motivation to keep living?

But how do we find that innate joy? That joy, that, you can still find even when times are rough and everything is ready to fall apart.

Well, Psalm 126 shows us a good example of how the Israelites lived with joy:

Psalm 126:2

We were filled with laughter,
and we sang for joy.
And the other nations said,
“What amazing things the Lord has done for them.”
Yes, the Lord has done amazing things for us!
What joy!

First, they looked back and saw what the Lord had done for them. They saw, and they rejoiced! Looking back, looking at the past, can give you a new perspective. It can show you how good your life truly is. You may have missed it when the past was the present, but now looking back will show you the truth. It will give you appreciation for what God has done and in turn, give you joy.

Psalm 126:4

Restore our fortunes, Lord,
as streams renew the desert.

Then, they looked forward with expectation. They saw what the Lord had done for them in the past and look forward to what the Lord would do for them in the future. That gave them joy. You know how excited and happy you get waiting for something (for me, it’s book mail). We should feel the same way for what God will do in our lives. More so even, because joy is deeper, more fulfilling, than happiness that fades away over time.

I’m no expert on this. There are many ways to find joy, but ultimately all those ways lead to one person that is at the center point of where your joy comes from. And that’s God. All the joy we ever have comes from God. He is the one who gives us joy. We find joy in Him no matter what way we do to get there.

-G. Paige