Monday, September 14, 2015

What Has Happened To All Your Joy?

Hello Friends, Followers and Viewers,
It is September 14, one of my sisters birthday today.  If she is reading this, Happy Birthday to you and wishing you many more.
It is a "joy" to have her with us today.  I'm not sure if I ever told you how cancer runs rampant in our family.  It has taken so many of our members.  My sister has had to deal with breast cancer but thank God she is still with us today.

Today we’re going to take a plunge into the topic called “joy”.  Christmas is not that far away and we will be singing the carol, "Joy To The World".  If you are a regular reader of  scripture you know it is full of references dealing with "joy" in both the Old Testament and the New Testament.  If you know of Kay Warren, she has written a book, "Choose Joy: Because Happiness Isn't Enough"

What constitute joy?  Merriam Webster says, (1) it is a feeling  or source of great happiness, (2)  success in doing, finding, or getting something.

Biblical reference (a few): Nehemiah 8:10 says, "For the joy of the LORD is your strength;   James 1:2 , "My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; and the Fruit of the Spirit as found in Galatians 5:22-23: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control…”

Joy is often misunderstood.  We tend to equate “happiness” with joy but they are two totally different ideas because they each spring from a different source. One comes from the world around me. The other originates directly from the Spirit of the Living God. Happiness is conditioned by and often dependent upon what is “happening” to me. If people treat me good, if things are going well in my life, then I’m happy. If my circumstances aren’t favorable, then I’m unhappy.

Joy, on the other hand, throbs throughout Scripture as a profound, compelling quality of life that transcends the events and disasters which may dog God’s people. Joy is a divine dimension of living that is not shackled by circumstances. The Hebrew word means, “to leap or spin around with pleasure.” In the New Testament the word refers to “gladness, bliss and celebration.”

Has something happened to your joy?  Do you have some unsatisfied expectations that have led to a spirit of discontent?    Are you involved in some conflict with someone?   Is God’s hand heavy upon you right now because of some sin that you’ve not confessed and repented of?   Lost joy can be restored. As a result of some discontentment, some conflict, and some open sin, David (in the Bible) had tubed out spiritually. His joy was a long-lost memory. And yet, he boldly prays in Psalm 51:12, “Restore to me the joy of your salvation…” God honored his prayer, and He will honor yours. 

For this card, I used the following:
white Recollection cardstock cut @ 3.5  x 5.5 (tall and skinny card)
slate blue Recollection cardstock cut 1/8 inch less on all four sides for a mat; Spellbinders floral die  was used twice to cut out the vines
pattern paper from Recollection was placed under the mat;
Martha Stewart butterfly embellishment along with three gems and the  word "joy" cut from wood.

Sending you a hug and LOVE,

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