Joy isn’t about feeling, but about being. From the prison cell Paul writes, “Rejoice in the Lord always, I will say it again, rejoice!” You might not feel great about where you are, or what you’re doing but you can still experience Joy.
Paul wrote from a prison cell to encourage us to be joyful. The author of the Book of Hebrews says that Jesus went to the cross in Joy. He went to his death with all that pain and suffering, but had a spirit of Joy. “Who for the JOY set before Him, endured the cross…”
Both of these tell me that Joy isn’t about feeling, but about being. Joy isn’t a passing emotion that comes and goes based on what might be happening around me. Joy is a part of who I am as a child of God. I am Joyful. It’s part of my character. It’s part of my identity. It’s who I am.
If it’s who I am then it cannot be taken away from me. Whether I am in prison or being persecuted or even killed for my faith I can rejoice because of God’s great love for me. Keep looking to Jesus to find that Joy, and remember that it cannot be taken away!
Dear Jesus, you went to the cross in JOY. Help me to live in JOY today no matter what I face. Amen.