Guarding our Joy is no easy task. If we’re not careful, trials and unwanted surprises can snatch our joy in an instant. So, how do we prepare ourselves from all the Joy Stealers that we are all bound to face at some point in our lives?
1 Peter 1:3-7 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. ~ The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (1 Pe 1:3–7). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.
Two Powerful Reminders When Guarding Our Joy:
Step One: Focus our attention on our Living Hope and not the moment. Because of His great mercy, we now possess a hope that was meant for our good while we walk through the valley of the shadow of death. We don’t have to wait until a trial is over to have this Hope. We can have Hope in the midst of the heartbreak. Not an ordinary hope, rather a Living Hope that produces Joy. Isn’t it wonderful that God is guarding all the blessings He has stored for us? Isn’t it a joyful reminder to consider that He will never leave us or forsake us. His blessings and His promises are not dependent on our abilities or strength, but His alone. Walking in Joy is possible when we set our attention on our Hope instead of our heartbreaks.
Step Two: Set our attention on praise. Living a Joy filled life will spill over in our actions. We will smile more, say kind words, and think joy building thoughts. Research confirms what the Scriptures tell us. When we smile, listen to joyful music, or surround ourselves with others who are joy filled we too are more joyful.
Three Of My Favorite Scriptures For Guarding Joy
There are so many verses and testimonies in the Scriptures that encourage me to hold fast to my Joy, however, one of my favorite verses that I often remind the family of is in Philippians. I can’t emphasize enough, the importance of taking our thoughts captive. We must set our attention on giving praise to the One who can do exceedingly, abundantly, more in our lives than we could have ever imagined.
Philippians 4:8-9 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. ~ The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Php 4:8–9). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.
Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. ~ The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Ga 5:22–23). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.
Philippians 4: 4-7 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. ~ The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Php 4:4–7). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.
I hope you’ll join me today as I make the decision to cut off any and all excuses that would keep me from guarding my Joy!
To God be the Glory,
Mrs. Joseph Wood