“Then he said to them, “Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the LORD is your strength.””
-Joy in Greek is written as khar-ah which means delight, cheerfulness & gladness. There is a difference between joy & happiness. Happiness is a temporal feeling of pleasure that is often dependent on something pleasant happening but joy is a permanent fruit given to us by the Holy Spirit. Jesus confirms that joy is permanent/ unending when He says that; His joy remains in us & that it may be full (John 15:11) & our joy no one will take from us (John 16:22). After the successful rebuilding of the wall of Jerusalem, Nehemiah told the people to eat, drink & share with those who did not have, for they had obtained victory despite great pressure elicited from their enemies. In the same way the world is full of fear, worry, anxiety, discouragement, pressure, frustrations etc, that even with the pursuit of pleasure they do not bring us to deep & lasting happiness. Nehemiah later dedicated the wall of Jerusalem to the Lord & there was great joy & celebration in the land (Neh 12:27-43). We are called to cast all our burdens & cares unto Jesus for through His works on the cross we achieve liberty in Him. Further, due to the permanent nature of the joy of the Lord, we remain strong & unshaken, rooted in Him so that when pressure, discouragement, hopelessness, anxiety & other forms of weaknesses come our way; we remain victorious through faith in Him.
We are glad & delight in You Lord for Your goodness & mercy upon our lives. Many are the times we have been anxious, discouraged, doubtful & hopeless through various experiences; but Father Your joy has remained our strength. We humbly ask You to cover us & protect us by Your precious blood that no evil snare may harm us. We thank You Father for encouraging us through Your word everyday Lord, we put all our hopes & trust in You. We rejoice & glory in Your name Jesus, there is none other like You; receive all our thanksgiving & praise. Amen
“Shout for joy to God, all the earth! Sing the glory of his name; make his praise glorious.”
-God deserves shouts of joy for His wonderful power, wisdom, goodness, everlasting love & faithfulness manifested in our lives & entire world through His works of salvation, provision of life, glorious creation, revelation of His power & truth, unending grace upon us His children & for many other things. Through the manifestation of these graces we rightfully give our admiration & praise to Him with joyful sounds. In our human nature we were created to praise God which should be our subject & offer thanksgiving to Him our object. Gods’ dwelling place is full of glory & by honouring Him we rightly restore to Him that which is His own. God is the only One who deserves our worship & this should be our portion as true believers for the name, nature & person of God is worthy of the highest honour.
We exult You God our Creator with shouts of praise & honour You for Your everlasting love & mercy upon us. All creation sings glorious praises to You Father for You alone are worthy. You are our refuge & our deliverer Lord, no harm will overtake us, no disaster will come near our tent for You Father will command Your angels concerning us to guard us in all our ways. Strengthen all the weak & suffering, & answer all our prayers Lord. We thank You for You have been gracious & merciful to us Father, since the foundation of the world, we exult Your name forever. Amen
“He who begets a scoffer does so to his sorrow, And the father of a fool has no joy. A merry heart does good, like medicine, But a broken spirit dries the bones.”
-Children have been commanded to obey their parents which yields long life. The same obedience makes the hearts of our parents joyful & in one way or another also lengthen their days. We read that a wise son brings joy to his father, but a foolish son brings grief to his mother (Prov 10:1). Like medicine, obedient children cause joy & delight in the hearts of their parents but those who are fond of trouble precipitate pain & stress; which might dry up their bones faster. Further, the father of a righteous child has great joy; a man who fathers a wise son rejoices in him (Prov 23:24). In the righteousness of Christ we find favour in God & among men, & His blessings of peace, joy, gladness, grace, wisdom, prosperity, long life & many more; never leave our households to many generations.
In Your presence Lord we dwell secure, fill our hearts with Your love. Help us Jehovah to dwell in righteousness & obedience to You & our parents as You have commanded. Many times we have hardened our hearts, forgive us Father & give us hearts of flesh that we may be willing to partake of Your wisdom & walk upright according to Your will. Bless all our parents with good health, wisdom, grace, peace, long life & fulfil their hearts desires so that their hearts may always be joyful. Remember us Your children Father; & bless us with the dew of heaven, open the storehouse of Your bounty & send rain in our land; & bless the work of our hands for Your blessings add no sorrow. We believe in You Lord & trust in You in all things. Amen
3 John 1:4
“I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.”
-Apostle John; did not hide his joy but exposed it to Gaius his friend expressing how his congregants walk in truth. Walking in truth may imply; honesty of ones intention, sincerity in speech, firm regard to the word of God & positive progress by doing as per Gods’ word through His grace; all which draw us closer to God. Walking in truth fills us with joy & peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit we may abound in hope (Rom 15:13). Lastly, God desires that we be joyful in Him in all situations for He says “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice” (Phil 4:4).
Fill us with the fruit of joy Holy Spirit we humbly ask You. We incline our hearts to Your truth Lord, shepherd us in the light of Your salvation & renew Your right Spirit within us. Be glorified forever Lord God Almighty for You have risen in our hearts, families, relationships & nation, & has made everything new, we believe. We ascribe to You grace Lord & believe that You have already granted us that which You have promised us righteous Father. You are the resurrected King we rejoice in Your name always. Amen
”Now it came to pass, while He blessed them, that He was parted from them and carried up into heaven. And they worshiped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple praising and blessing God. Amen.”
-The beginning of Jesus life on earth & His end were similar for they both share the characteristics of rejoicing. During His birth, the angel brought good news of joy to Mary His mother that Jesus was destined to take away the sins of the world (Mat 1:21), & His end was also characterized by rejoicing for this prophecy was fulfilled & the disciples worshipped Him continually when He was carried up to heaven. The disciples rejoiced despite Jesus leaving them for Heaven. They understood that their time to proclaim the gospel of the Lord had come as His representatives on earth; empowered by the Holy Spirit, which we are also called to do.
Joy is a permanent possession while happiness is fleeting for it is dependent on ones emotions. Joy is essential to every Christian life which makes us forget our troubles by channeling them to Christ Who increases our days; as seen from the time Israelites were redeemed from slavery in Egypt. The Holy Spirit gives us the grace of joy everyday despite the shortcomings that come our way. The joy of the Lord therefore becomes our strength & makes us strong through His everlasting love that enable us overcome every storm & weakness when we approach His throne of grace. The Holy Spirit also gives us joy & peace that we may rest secure in Christ Who is our Foundation that we may believe in Him & have life in abundance. We are also called to rejoice for our names are written in heaven & not because our spirits submit to us (Lk 10:20).
You are the Beginning & the End Jesus we rejoice & are glad in You. You knew our beginning & predestined our purpose & our end we put all our trust in You. We cast all our burdens unto You Jesus for Your yoke is easy & Your burden is light, we rest secure in You. May Your blood purify us, protect us from all evil snares Lord our Protector & fill our hearts with Your joy everyday. We worship You & bless Your holy name forever. Amen