Paul wrote by THE SPIRIT in Galatians chapter 5:

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,

23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.

24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.

What is joy?  One definition is: “Joy is the settled assurance that God is in control of all the details of my life, the quiet confidence that ultimately everything is going to be alright, and the determined choice to praise Our Heavenly Father in every situation.”  Given that joy is listed immediately after Agape Love, this definition is appropriate.  When we understand FATHER’S unconditional Love for us, we have the quiet confidence HE is ordering our steps in all situations we encounter, no matter what challenges we face.

James wrote by THE SPIRIT in chapter 1:

2 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials,

3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.

4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.

6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind.

7 For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;

8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.

As we are led by THE SPIRIT, we are no longer moved by the circumstances around us for those circumstances are testing our faith and producing patience.  When we are in the midst of various trials, we should only speak and respond according to FATHER’S Wisdom rather than out of our own understanding else we will suffer regret. 

Words will either be a blessing to others or they will sting causing hurt to the recipient.  Words of kindness are life-giving.  Our words will reflect double-mindedness if our heart has any doubt.  When we critically assess our words, actions, and responses to others, we will know what level of faith we are operating in.

If we are feeling sorry for ourselves then we are missing joy in our hearts and should return to FATHER’S Word and get that settled assurance that HE is in control of every situation we encounter.  I know there are times when it seems that I have been stretched beyond my capabilities but FATHER is building my faith and showing me that I am stronger than previously thought.  As Paul wrote by THE SPIRIT in 2 Corinthians chapter 12:

9 And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Let no person or event steal your joy.  Walk in that quiet confidence knowing Our Heavenly Father will provide the necessary resources and strength to overcome.  Simply smile in the face of adversity for in the end, we will prevail through Agape Love.

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