Fruit of the Spirit (Pt. 2): Joy

Hello, friend! Welcome to my blog. I hope you’re doing well! Today we’ll be continuing our series called the Fruit of the Spirit. Last week, we talked about love. This week, we’ll be talking about joy. Let’s get into it!

Happiness vs. Joy

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.”

Galatians 5:22-23 (Bold added)

When you read this verse, what do you think it means when it lists joy as one of the fruits of the Spirit? Does it mean we need to be happy all the time?

Yes, but not in the way you think. Joy is more permanent than happiness, but it’s not finding joy in worldly things. I can be happy about that chocolate cupcake; I can be happy about the vacation I’m going to take; I can be happy when I talk to my friends. But the joy talked about here goes so much farther than that. 

Wynter Pitts puts it well in her book, God’s Girl Says Yes:

The circumstances of our lives will change all the time, but we can have joy in our hearts because God never changes.

Wynter Pitts, God’s Girl Says Yes

The joy we receive from God is so much better than a funny conversation with our friends or an enjoyable vacation. It’s permanent, eternal, and everlasting. When we love God and seek a relationship with Him, our hearts can overflow with joy.

Happiness can end in an instant. I could drop my cupcake; the vacation could end; my friends may decide they don’t want to be my friends anymore. But that joy in God? That will always be there.

Joy In Suffering

That joy can even carry into hard times. Several writers of the New Testament even say to rejoice in suffering. 

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

James 1:2-4

In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved with various trials.

1 Peter 1:6

Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope.

Romans 5:3-4

When the world leaves us in the dust, Jesus is always by our side. He’s there, and He loves us. We can plead, cry, praise, and thank Him. Whatever the circumstance, He’ll always be there.

And because of what He did for us on the cross. Living, dying and rising again so that we could be with Him, He is our eternal joy.

So we can joyfully say with Paul:

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice.

Philippians 4:4

The Challenge

I challenge you, this week, especially to dive into prayer in finding that joy (again, like last time, I will be trying to do it as well!). Try wrapping these things into your prayer(s):

  1. Thank Jesus for what He did for us.
  2. Ask for joy in God and your relationship with Him.
  3. Ask for your joy to overflow in everyday life.

Try to pray every day, but don’t just say it, commit to it. Write it on a notecard and stick it somewhere you’ll see it during the day. I wouldn’t recommend phone notifications because those rarely work for me. I see the notification and then slide it off my screen and it’s gone! But if you work well with phone notifications, go for it.

Final Thoughts

Thank you for reading today’s article about joy! I hope it was helpful and encouraging for you. If you haven’t already, please consider subscribing to my email list for notifications when I post, three exclusive articles, and my monthly newsletter.

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Have a blessed day,

~Caroline

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