“True Joy”, from L.Willows, quotes on Christian Joy (see Jesus, God’s purpose, Hope)

My journey with God has been accompanied by inner heart joy. It may recede at times because of an immediate challenge, weariness or the fog of my own perspective but the Lord’s Mercy rescues me just at the right moment and lifts me back into the arms of his Grace.

There- there is The Joy. We are secured in His Love, held in a joyful embrace; one that never let us go. One that was always there watchful and waiting for our return home. I need joy. I do ask for joy. I pray that we all walk with and for the purpose of True Joy.

James 1:2 ” “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials” comes to mind when days become difficult. Scripture is reminding me to recall that God has a purpose for each trial that comes into our lives and that purpose is for good. As we put our trust, our faith in Jesus Christ, who is counted as the Joy- our lives draw us towards him and towards the purpose of knowing his Glory. Philippian’s 2:13 “For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.

I saw a wonderful article that reminded us that the word “count” in the James 1:2 means consider. It suggested that we consider all of the blessings that we have been bestowed with now and learn to rejoice in the midst of difficulty. That is an artform! It means to alter perspective in the times that we are most likely to wish to turn away from God in hopelessness. Instead we turn towards him and give thanks. We worship, we praise. We give thanks for what we have been blessed with and lift our eyes and hearts up as we count our blessings before the altar of God. We see Jesus. Our perspective turns to the Joy of Jesus Christ.

This, in contrast to the word “fall” into trials. It is interesting that when it comes to trails- we fall. Paul, the speaker is telling us, his brothers and sisters to count- consider our blessings and alter our heart perspective. We are to lift our hearts to see differently.

We put our trust and faith in Jesus who is the count of Joy- counted as Joy itself. We draw towards him. We lift, rather than fall into trials. The sin and stains of falling from grace that cause pain and suffering are gathered by his Mercy and Love. And God works all for good and fulfills his purpose. (Philippian’s 2:13)

Here are some quotes on Christian Joy that I would like to share with you:

Man cannot live without joy; therefore when he is deprived of true spiritual joys it is necessary that he become addicted to carnal pleasures. Thomas Aquinas

Gratitude changes the pangs of memory into a tranquil joy. Dietrich Bonhoeffer

A genuine revival without joy in the Lord is as impossible as spring without flowers, or day-dawn without light. Charles Haddon Spurgeon

The very nature of Joy makes nonsense of our common distinction between having and wanting. C.S. Lewis

I choose joy… I will invite my God to be the God of circumstance. I will refuse the temptation to be cynical… the tool of the lazy thinker. I will refuse to see people as anything less than human beings, created by God. I will refuse to see any problem as anything less than an opportunity to see God. Max Lucado

 The mere fact itself that God’s will is irresistible and irreversible fills me with fear, but once I realize that God wills only that which is good, my heart is made to rejoice. A.W. Pink

Those who know where the treasure lies joyfully abandon everything else to secure it. D.A. Carson

 There is a joy which is not given to the ungodly, but to those who love Thee for Thine own sake, whose joy Thou Thyself art. And this is the happy life, to rejoice to Thee, of Thee, for Thee; this it is, and there is no other. St. Augustine

The world looks for happiness through self-assertion. The Christian knows that joy is found in self-abandonment. ‘If a man will let himself be lost for My sake,’ Jesus said, ‘he will find his true self.’ Elizabeth Elliot

 In the long run, there can be no joy for anybody until there is joy finally for us all. Frederick Bruckner

When the heart is full of joy, it always allows its joy to escape. It is like the fountain in the marketplace; whenever it is full it runs away in streams, and so soon as it ceases to overflow, you may be quite sure that it has ceased to be full. The only full heart is the overflowing heart. Charles Spurgeon

Joy is prayer – Joy is strength – Joy is love – Joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls. God loves a cheerful giver. She gives most who gives with joy. The best way to show our gratitude to God and the people is to accept everything with joy. A joyful heart is the inevitable result of a heart burning with love. Never let anything so fill you with sorrow as to make you forget the joy of the Christ risen. Mother Teresa

“Footprints in Awe”, a poem from L.Willows (wonder, See Jesus, Beauty of God, Joy)

FOOTPRINTS IN AWE

Lifted through the clouds I fell to Thee,
As if my all could float and fly free.
Like a child of God in sweetest roam,
Swept near, swept in so close to Home.n

The sky above led to Your Throne,
and the earth below was heaven’s own.
Gateways opened upon rainbow lights.
Love’s door opened with tender might.

The moment stood still as if apart,
Vivid with color; time soaked my heart.
All of my life and being was held
in a pillar of Light, a joy drift that swelled.

“Surge”, my heart said, don’t let this go.
Life could take you back in its tow.
Oh, the beauty, the Love, the wonders I saw,
I wept joy in my soul and made footprints in awe.

© 2017 Linda Willows

Isaiah 61:3 — To grant those who mourn in Zion, Giving them a garland instead of ashes, The oil of gladness instead of mourning, The mantle of praise instead of a spirit of fainting. So they will be called oaks of righteousness, The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.

Jeremiah 9:24 —But let him who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the Lord who exercises lovingkindness, justice and righteousness on earth; for I delight in these things,” declares the Lord.

“The Yes of Love”, a poem from L.Willows (Glory of God, See Jesus)

b2cbfbd063823176901cb30309340854

The Yes of Love,
it looked like this,
with words that spoke
of the morning’s bliss.

Here they are fathomed,
there they are kept,
with joy in the reach
of dreams love swept.

Speak the Yes.
Let the words confer,
before the Angel sky clouds
assemble to stir.

In first of the day
let all prayers rise to flight.
Oh, such was the night
that brought our hearts to God’s sight.

The Yes in Him, the Yes of love
It looked like all, filled with God above.

© 2019 Linda Willows

1 Corinthians 1:20 – “For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory.”