Christmas is a time when we speak and sing of joy. And rightly so! But sometimes it's hard to experience it, isn't it? The hustle and bustle of responsibility in the busy season can weigh us down. Or maybe you're going through a trial right now that's sapping your joy. Trials don't seem to care what time of year it is. But we can experience joy anytime, regardless of our circumstances.
Sometimes I think we strive to experience joy when we don't have to. It's true, we have a part to play in receiving joy. But God is the giver of Joy. I heard a preacher say, "Isn't it beautiful how, when you do your part, God does the part that only He can do?"
Romans 15:13 (NKJV) says:
"Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit."
God does the filling. He gives us joy. So what's our part? As in all things, we are to trust in Him and walk in His ways. For instance, the Word tells us to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Cor. 10:5), meaning, we replace thoughts that are not in keeping with the Word with thoughts that are.
Proverbs 23:7 (NKJV) tells us,"For as he thinks in his heart, so is he."
Philippians 4 tells us to think about things that are pure, lovely, and of a good report.
If we think negative things all the time, it's going to be hard to receive joy. We do have a part to play. But we can think all positive thoughts and STILL not have joy. Joy is God's part to give. And He gives abundantly. If joy seems elusive to you right now, you can have it. Just ask Him for it, believing. He is so faithful. He will do it. It will bubble up out of nowhere and wash over you! Father, I thank you for the joy You give so readily. I ask you to flood the heart of every person reading this now with your unmasked joy. I pray you will give them good, carefree and merry days this Christmas! In Jesus' name. Amen.