When I think of the meaning of joy, there are many things that come to mind. A baby in a fit of giggles. Christmas morning. A proposal. A new puppy. A surprise party. A fun wedding dance. The expression on a person’s face experiencing it is telling of their blissful state. What I love about joy is that it’s contagious. Once someone gets the giggles, it’s not long before those near bust out themselves.
There’s a different kind of joy in Jesus. One that cannot compare to any other pleasure we feel this side of Heaven.
It’s the joy found in His presence.
“You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.” – Psalm 16:11
Not just a taste…not just a hint…but fullness of joy is ours when we are in His presence. He is a god of abundance…He lavishes His love upon us…how can that not bring joy? David spoke of this joy much throughout Psalms. The presence of God was so vital in his life that He begged God to never let it leave.
“Cast me not away from your presence,
and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and uphold me with a willing spirit.” – Psalm 51:11
The presence of God, the Holy Spirit, is the most exquisite thing you will ever experience. There have been certain moments in my life where I have felt Him so strongly & so intensely that I truly thought I would melt into a gooey puddle. I didn’t want to leave because of the overwhelming love, peace & joy I felt. Jesus made a way for us to experience Him at anytime when He gave Himself up for our sins. When you sense Him near, you just can’t help yourself.
This is where the difference between religion & relationship become obvious. Religion is the furthest thing from joyful. There’s no passion, no spark. Relationship bears witness of His character. Relationship is a yearning to be with Him instead of it being a chore or task. Relationship knows their God as a close friend, a confidante. It is in those moments when you have realized who He is and what you are to Him that the joy comes. Joy cannot be experienced in a rigid environment. It flourishes in an atmosphere of love.
When you are in His presence, His voice can be heard. To hear the Lover of our soul whisper to us & and that He wants to know us just as much…wow.
He is the root of all joy. Get in His presence frequently and I assure you, you will start to bear this fruit without much effort.
“The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete.” – John 3:29
“Splendor and majesty are before him; strength and joy are in his place.” 1 Chronicles 16:27
“Sing joyfully to God, all the earth: serve ye the Lord with gladness. Come in before his presence with exceeding great joy.” – Psalm 100:2
“For you make him most blessed forever; you make him glad with the joy of your presence.” Psalm 21:6