These things I have spoken to you that My Joy may remain in you and your joy may be full. John 15:11
Joy and happiness are two different things: Happiness is the result of favorable experiences and situations. Happiness can be here today, gone tomorrow; it's fleeting! True joy, which is inward joy, is the result of a deep relationship with God and is a constant, even through trials and tribulations.
Our joy can be robbed by life circumstances if we don't have a daily and personal relationship with the Lord---and Satan works overtime at distracting us in every way possible. If we are too busy to spend devotions with the Lord we are robbed of the joy of this relationship. Relationships are cultivated and deepened when we spend time with the very person we want to get to know better!
Pursuing a deep and personal relationship with Jesus through daily prayer, daily time in scriptures and a daily pursuit of His presence results in a deeper knowledge of Him. A deeper knowledge of Him results in true, inward joy.
Inward joy defeats discouragement; happiness covers it up. Inward joy is lasting; happiness is temporary.
The world says happiness is the result of material gain, status and beauty. God tells us that real joy is a result of simply being in His very presence: You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy." Psalm 16:11
There is evidence everywhere that the world is lying about what can bring us joy...the wealthiest of people experience depression, divorce and pain. Fame and Fortune isn't the answer either: Hollywood is full of immorality, suicide and drugs to medicate empty lives. People that pursue the world's definition of happiness and joy come up empty-handed even in the presence of wealth and success.
We can't always rejoice in our circumstances or people because we can't always control these things and they can be unpredictable. But we can rejoice in the Lord, because He is always good, and He never changes! God loves; God saves; God IS!
Rejoice in the Lord always,. Again I will say, rejoice! Philippians 4:4
"Lord, thank You for the promise of full joy! I pray that You will draw me closer to You daily, that my joy can be complete in Your presence. Teach me how to rise above the circumstances of my life and experience the joy You have promised me. Let my joy be full and let it flow through me to all that I connect with today and always. Amen