Sometime in the last year, I attended a Christian women’s event. The title of the presentation was, “Have you seen my Joy? Providing truths that lead to an oasis of joy in the desert of discouragement.”
Forgive me for not remembering the speaker’s name, but 2 of her main points really stuck with me.
1. We have to intentionally hold onto joy.
2. Joy is the birthmark of a child of God.
The first point reminds me of how important it is to live a spirit-filled life. Pastor Brian has said, “We need to be continually filled with the Holy Spirit…because we leak!”
And remember…joy is listed among the fruits of the Spirit. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” Galatians 5:22-23
If we are asking God to fill us with the Holy Spirit and continue to surrender to His will and His ways on a daily basis, we will be spirit-filled and as a result, experience joy. But this doesn’t happen by chance…we have to be intentional about it.
When I think about her second point…that joy is the birthmark of a child of God…I am reminded of what I have learned recently while studying the book of Acts, which was written by Luke.
Luke mentions joy throughout Acts, in relation to many different types of experiences – even including the apostles rejoicing after being flogged for sharing the Gospel. (Acts 5:41) What I’ve learned is that the apostles experienced joy in ANY circumstance simply because they rejoiced that the Holy Spirit was IN them, a privilege they had not experienced before the Pentecost.
I also think that this same joy in the Spirit is what allowed Paul to “be content whatever the circumstances.” Philippians 4:11
These are examples of Christ’s followers exhibiting that “joy is the birthmark of a child of God.”
Let us walk daily with the Holy Spirit so that we may rejoice in every situation.