Throughout history people have always sought joy. But it is not something man is capable of manufacturing on his own. In fact, its very existence is proof of its source.
Joy is not birthed in the brilliance of philosophers. François-Marie Aroue, known asVoltaire, was considered one of the most influential thinkers of his time. Yet he wrote, "I wish I had never been born."
Joy is not achieved in pleasure. “George Gordon Byron, 6th Baron, was a British poet and a leading figure in Romanticism. Lord Byron's was famous for his writings but also his life, which featured extravagant living, numerous love affairs, debts, separation, and allegations of incest and sodomy.” He wrote, "The worm, the canker, and the grief are mine alone."
Joy is not purchased with money. Jay Gould, an American millionaire, had plenty of that. When dying he said, "I suppose I am the most miserable man on earth."
Joy is not achieved through position or fame. Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield, was a British Conservative statesman and literary figure. Disraeli served in government for thirty years, twice as the Prime Minister. His most lasting achievement was the creation of the modern Conservative Party. He wrote: "Youth is a mistake; manhood, a struggle; old age, a regret."
Joy does not come from might. Alexander the Great conquered the known world in his day. Having done so, he wept and stated, "There are no more worlds to conquer."
Isaiah 12:2,3—“Indeed, God is my salvation; I will trust Him and not be afraid, for Yah, the Lord, is my strength and my song. He has become my salvation.” You will joyfully draw water from the springs of salvation.
Kaufmann Kohler states in the Jewish Encyclopedia that no language has as many words for joy and rejoicing, as does Hebrew. Thirteen Hebrew roots, found in 27 different words, are used primarily for some aspect of joy or joyful participation in religious worship. Pure joy is joy in God as both its source and object. King David wrote, "You reveal the path of life to me; in Your presence is abundant joy; in Your right hand are eternal pleasures” (Psalms 16:11).
A Hindu trader in India once asked a missionary, "What do you put on your face to make it shine?" With surprise the man of God answered, "I don't put anything on it!" Impatiently, his questioner said, "Yes, you do! All of you who believe in Jesus seem to have it. I've seen it in the towns of Agra and Surat, and even in the city of Bombay." Suddenly the Christian understood, and his face glowed even more as he said, "Now I know what you mean, and I will tell you the secret. It's not something we put on from the outside but something that comes from within. It's the reflection of the light of God in our hearts.”
Joy is neither happiness nor brightness, joy is literally the nature of God in my blood, no matter what happens.—Oswald Chambers inThe Psychology of Redemption
©2007 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)