But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. (Galatians 5:22 MSG)
We are already into the second month of the year. That may seem incredible to you. Though it is still early in the year, you may be feeling burnt out or drained. It may seem as though your energy is seeping away with each day or that your dreams for the year are already seeping through your fingers. If you feel this way, you are not alone.
One of the fruits which the Holy Spirit gives is joy.
The Message Translation of the Bible describes it as an exuberance for life. Happiness generally comes from the things we do. You can be happy because you achieved a goal, went on a great vacation or because you had a need met. In much the same way, happiness is transient. The joy which the Holy Spirit gives us is not linked to anything external. It is deep seated and comes from within. All we need to do is to tune in to God. Let’s focus on how big our God is, what He has done for us and others in the past and what He is working out for us in the present. When we keep in step with Him, the future can only be glorious.
God wants us to go through life with a song in our heart and a spring in our step. That kind of attitude would offend the devil because he would be disappointed seeing us joyful regardless of whatever he has thrown at us. And we have reason to be thankful and joyful. The gift of life, is life’s ultimate gift and it is yours today! Seize the day and declare “this is the day the Lord has made, I would rejoice and be glad in it”.
Christ wants to give us joy. He wants to wipe the tears from our eyes. The prophet Isaiah speaking about Christ the Messiah had this to say in Isaiah 61.
To all who mourn in Israel, he will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the Lord has planted for his own glory. (Isaiah 61:3 NLT)
This promise is yours. Let us yield to the work of the Spirit in our lives so this joy can be our portion. Allow His presence to permeate every sphere of your life with no closed walls. Let’s give him our hurts, our sorrows, our pain so we can receive His joy. The joy of the Lord is our strength.