What gives you the most joy? If you were to make a list, how many items of joy would you write? One? Five? One hundred? Or too many to count?
Eternal Perspectives by Sally Bair
Each season of nature offers moments of joy. Watching the changing colors of autumn always sets my heart to rejoicing in God’s provision and beauty. And one early spring during a walk along a gravel road, as I watched bubbles emerge from the frost one at a time, slowly growing in size until they burst, I again felt joy.
What a joy to behold! The surprising sight was indeed a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The bubbles reminded me of some new believers in Christ, whose hearts were hard as frost until they accepted Him into their lives and then burst forth in bubbles of joy. Many people testify to having been frozen in bitterness, anger, or other crippling strongholds and then turning to the only One who is able to thaw their hearts. Made new, they become so joy-filled that they are compelled to share their happiness with others.
In the far north, frost never does reach the surface of the ground. Some hearts are like permafrost, so hard that nothing can penetrate the darkness. They miss the joy that God offers them, staying frozen in negative emotions. They aren’t willing to break through the darkness of sin and choose to allow God’s joy to bubble forth in their lives.
Believing in God is a matter of choice. Right behind faith, joy is waiting on the surface ready to bubble through our whole being. If we think of all the happy moments we've experienced, the greatest moments in our lives, they can't begin to compare to that of choosing Christ as our Savior and Lord. "Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and even though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls." (1 Peter 1:8-9)
Furthermore, Jesus said, “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” (John 7:38) Joy that comes from new life in Christ begins as a bubble that bursts forth as a river, hard to contain.
Lord, thank You for not only taking joy in us but filling us with the joy that comes from trusting and obeying You. We gladly choose to accept Your love and grace so we can experience the inexpressible and glorious joy You desire for us. We humbly ask this in the name of Jesus, who gives abounding joy. Amen.