MATTHEW 5:12 Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, For so they persecuted the prophets who were before you. The Message translation reads, “You can be glad when that happens – give a cheer, even! For though they don’t like it, I do! And all heaven applauds. And know that you are in good company. My prophets and witnesses have always gotten into this kind of trouble” (MSG)
So how are we to have joy in the midst of our battles? Joy and happiness are totally different because one depends on what’s happening in our life at the time. Happiness does not bring contentment – it comes and goes. Joy is from the very heart of God through the Holy Spirit.
JOHN 15:11 These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full (ESV).
No one person or circumstances can take God’s joy from you. No doubt, we will have many challenges throughout our life. I know some of you right now are going through indescribable pain. As Christians, we must endure and press through sufferings knowing that we’re saved by the grace of God.
1 PETER 1:6-9 So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you must endure many trials for a little while. These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold – though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world. You love him even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy. The reward for trusting him will be the salvation of your souls (NLT).
Dear friends, don’t depend on the people or the world to bring you “short lived” happiness – experience real and everlasting joy knowing that when we persevere through the many trials of life, God is always with us. For inasmuch as we abide in Him, the fruit we produce in our lives will be joy (GALATIANS 5:22).
1 THESSALONIANS 5:16 Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus (NLT).
© Lee Gossett 2015