We know from scripture that Christians are temples of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 3:16; 6:19–20). He dwells in you and is with you at all times. If you are filled with the Holy Spirit, then you are also filled with joy. Acts 13:52 (NKJV) says, “And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.” Therefore, not only does the Spirit of God dwell in you, but joy also resides in you. And if the Holy Spirit living in you makes your body His temple, then joy dwelling in you means your body is a temple of joy!
How to Act in Adversity
When trouble comes, James 1:2 (NKJV) tells us to count it all joy. It doesn’t say that it will be all joy when you fall into various trials. No, it says to count or consider it as joy. How do you do that? You laugh when the temptations and trials come because the Greater One is in you. You know He won’t let you down, so there is no way you will go under. God is certainly not going under, and He’s with you!
God in you cannot fail. So why should you be “down in the dumps” when you encounter adversity? Someone might say, “But you don’t know what it’s like.” Do you believe the Word of God or not? It’s that simple. If you choose to trust God, then it doesn’t matter what your circumstances are. Just keep believing and counting it all joy.
“Someone Stole My Car!”
Something unusual happened years ago one Sunday morning at Rhema Bible Church. The platform was set up differently then. We had a choir loft, and the pastoral staff sat on the stage. Everyone was rejoicing during the service. Suddenly, a lady in the choir started dancing, shouting, and running. She ran around the choir loft and then over to the pastoral staff. She said to one of them, “Someone stole my car this morning!” Then she continued praising God. Someone stole her car that morning. Yet, she was running around the church shouting, laughing, and having a good time.
When you’re believing God for something, get happy and joyful about it.
Some people may not have gone to church. They would have used a stolen car as an excuse to stay home. If they did go, they would have been busy telling everyone what happened. Then they would have missed what God wanted to do in the service. But this lady counted it all joy! She had the attitude that it didn’t matter that her car was stolen. She believed God would get her a better one.
God can take what the devil intends for evil and turn it around for good! But if we lose our joy and start complaining, God can’t bless us.
Following the Lord caused the Thessalonians to be persecuted. Paul wrote: “And you became followers of us and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Spirit” (1 Thess. 1:6 NKJV). They received the Word with many afflictions and with the joy of the Holy Spirit! It’s time to let the joy in your heart flow into your life—in good times and in bad.
Joy in the Kingdom
Romans 14:17 (NKJV) says, “For the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.” In other words, joy is part of the Kingdom of God. And as a child of God, you should be taking part in the Kingdom, which means you should be experiencing joy in the Holy Spirit.
God is greater than any situation, trial, or circumstance. That’s why you can have joy! There’s no reason to ever have a long face. Someone might say, “Well, I had a tough day.” It’s time to start having God days! When trouble starts your day, turn it over to God.
Many times Christians try to do things their own way and in their own strength. They carry their anxieties instead of casting them to God (1 Peter 5:7). Jesus cares for you and won’t let you down. When you give your problems to Him, you can live worry-free. The reason your Heavenly Father wants you to be carefree is so that you spend your time rejoicing. When you are always worried, you can’t be joyful. And worry not only affects your physical life, it also affects your prayer life and how much you can receive from God.
People filled with the Holy Spirit are joyful and excited in spite of what’s going on around them. Problems aren’t fun, but they are opportunities to believe God and show that He is bigger than anything!
When you are full of the Holy Spirit, you will have days of Heaven on earth regardless of what challenges surround you. You can experience joy at all times—joy when bad news comes, joy when bills come, and joy no matter what the doctor tells you. Let the joy of the Lord be your strength (Neh. 8:10) and begin to rejoice in Him.
In the same way you must keep filling your car’s gas tank, you always have to fill your spirit with joy. Fill up every day. If you don’t, it will take longer to fill up when you need it. If you maintain a full joy tank, you can always rejoice!
Faith and Joy Go Together
When you are believing God for something, get happy and joyful about it. Don’t let an obstacle bother you. If it seems as if you won’t receive what you are standing in faith for, then get more joyful than you were before the difficulty appeared. Of course, you aren’t joyful about the problem but about the answer to your prayers.
If you put your faith in the power of God, there’s no reason to stop believing, because God cannot and will not fail! So don’t listen to what anyone else says. And don’t lose your joy because God has your answer. Simply trust His ability. You can have joy when your faith is in your Heavenly Father, because when you are confident of victory, you rejoice!
Think It Over
Have you been allowing the joy of the Lord to rule in your life? Or have you allowed situations and circumstances to take over? Decide today that you will count it all joy, no matter what.
Craig W. Hagin
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Very good reading, about joy.