Over the weekend I stumbled upon a fantastic community of bloggers via Kelly Balarie’s #RaRaLinkup. As I began surfing various blogs and reading through some really fantastic submissions, I found myself filled with emotion.
I was inspired.
I was challenged.
I was filled with joy.
I noticed how eloquently everyone seemed to write. It was as if I were reading lyrics to a song or poetry. There were heart tugging punch lines, and perfectly captured photos to compliment each entry’s theme.
I’m sure most of you have heard the quote attributed to Teddy Roosevelt that says:
“Comparison is the thief of Joy.”
I found myself thinking on that quote. The Holy Spirit was trying to tell me something… I was getting tripped up in the comparison trap!
Have you ever been there? Usually it starts with a thought like this:
“If only ___ were different in my life, I would be happier.”
The problem with this train of thought is that it births discontentment. Instead of being thankful for the unique person each of us are in Christ, the temptation becomes the clay questioning the potter (Isaiah 45:9-10).
Something the Lord has revealed to me over the last few months is that I will never find Joy in a change of circumstance. The only way to authentic, lasting Joy is through a change of heart.
So how do we go about applying this Truth? How can we have joy in our walk with God, regardless of circumstance?
We must first trust in Him
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart (Hebrews 12:1-3).”
God is our source of Joy
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13).”
Joy is a fruit of the Spirit
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law (Galatians 5:22-23.)”
God made us unique & for a purpose
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you (Jeremiah 1:5a).”
“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well (Psalms 139:14).”
“For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do (Ephesians 2:10).”
Joy is possible when we are secure in the Lord and it overflows when we have a thankful heart. Let us Praise the one who made us, for the joy of the Lord is our strength (Nehemiah 8:10).
Lord, forgive me for the times I question your perfect design. Remind me to look only to You for my worth and purpose in life. Let me fix my eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of my Faith. In Jesus name, Amen.