Joy and happiness are two different things, so I have realised, today. (Yes, I am sharing profound truths with you the minute I realise them. I am awesome)
Joy, as defined by Dr. Abuyomi here is peace of mind, calmness of spirit, and contentment of soul, and I agree with him (you are however free to disagree and provide Biblical proof! Kidding…[not really]). With this revelation, I don’t know if I have ever truly experienced joy or lived joyfully. I have experienced it when things were going my way, but when things fall apart, my “joy” flies away too. That’s a characteristic of happiness, which is an emotion, while joy is a state of being.
How I know that it’s not real joy is because joy does not change with circumstances, it’s something that is a gift from God. It can be taken away by the enemy if we let him, but joy is not pegged on situations or occurrences; it’s supposed to be constant.
Another thing, joy is from God. You can’t wish it upon your life, you can’t force yourself to feel joyful because it’s a supernatural thing. This gives me relief because I have tried to be joyful but I can’t conjure it up. To know that it’s not by my own strength is so freeing.
Joy cannot be provided by people, or things. It would be a great burden to expect a mere mortal like myself to gift me with this supernatural gift. Your husband, wife, child, friend cannot cause you to have joy. It only comes from God.
If you are unhappy, discontent or restless, ask God to give you peace, joy and contentment. It’s really simple, simpler than I thought. God who did not spare His own Son can graciously give us all things (Rom 8:32) – and the best part is – He is willing to.
We only need to trust.