“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy” (John 10:10). I understand this is not the most positive way to start a message but it is something I feel that I need to address. One thing the enemy (the thief) tries to do all the time is steal our joy. Why? He knows that our joy is our strength. He knows that our joy is a fountain of blessings. Joy is a powerful force that generates spiritual strength. If you are always joyful, you’re golden. You can tap into the power of the Lord because we have a joyful Lord. Joy is a fruit of the Spirit that yields more fruit. Just imagine what your life would be like is joy was part of if on a daily basis!
I recently decided to hold on to joy throughout the day. I start the day with prayer and praise and by the time I am done, I am ready to conquer the world and I feel super high spiritually. The adrenaline and the energy I get from being in prayer is beyond what words can describe. I tell one of my friends that I wish I could stay in prayer all day. Life would be so much simpler. As soon as I leave the house in the morning, the enemy tries to mess with my head and he sends his joy killers my way. Killing our joy is one of his jobs and he never stops. If I don’t stand firm and rebuke him, the joy oozes out. I have found that praising the Lord during those moments of adversity helps me maintain a good level of joy. The Holy Spirit has an endless supply of job. I lean into Him.
Identifying and recognizing the joy killers is a step in the right direction. I suggest you make a list of anything that destroys your joy on a regular basis. You will see that it usually starts in your mind. What are the thoughts that take joy away from you? What are the words that weaken your joy when you hear them or you see them? Once you have a good understanding of what the devil uses to rob you of your joy, pray about it. Meditate and pray about it. Find a scripture that works for you. Meditate on the joy killer by putting it (or them) against the scripture. I like to picture myself writing about the problem and giving it to the Lord. I release it. It does the job but I still need to pray about it and thank the Lord for the victory. I started doing that a few days ago. God is so good!
If we are able to keep our joy in the middle of trials, nothing can stop us. Having a joyful attitude despite our circumstances, guarantees that we can tap into the power of the Holy Spirit anytime. We won’t be dependent on how things make us feel, we will just rely on the joy of the Lord. When you are joyful you can do anything. When you are “joyless”, you don’t want to do anything. You would rather mope and stay home. You feel miserable. It’s time we took back what the thief keeps trying to steal from us. Staying joyful is a challenge but it’s worth the fight. You are not doing this alone. Let the Holy Spirit assist you. Use the spiritual tool of prayer. Praise and worship more. “Jesus came that you may have life and that you have it to the full” (other part of John 10:10). His version of life has joy as a fuel. Trust Him!
Suggested reading: John 6:51; Romans 15:13; 2 Peter 1:11