It's Top-Notch Tuesday!

Joy to the World!

When I decided to pursue joy instead of happiness, my life changed!

You may wonder, what’s the difference? Actually, there is a profound difference.

Happiness is the emotion of things that happen by chance. It is the emotion that follows something perceived to be good. For example, I get a good report from the doctor, and that makes me happy. I get a raise at work or the promotion I’ve been wanting, and that makes me happy. My home is warm, my spouse and I are getting along great, my kids are healthy, and my car is new and gets me wherever I want to go, and at the moment, all is well…This makes me happy! I’m living the American dream, my business is flourishing, I’m earning a pay check doing what I absolutely love to do, and I am happy. The issue is, when pursuing happiness, I placed my faith in things and people, and neither are sustainable. Things change in the blink of an eye and people are imperfect. The source of my happiness is gone, so now what? Ultimately, my quest in the pursuit of happiness (an emotion) was a snare from the enemy. This trap clogged my heart with selfish gain, ungratefulness, and drove me to a dead end street called, “The Next Best Thing.”

My pursuit of joy began the day I placed my life in the hands of Jesus. On this day, my faith in Christ reconciled me back to God the Father and Creator of all things. From that moment, the Lord began to do a transformational work on the inside of me. This produced a peace and an unspeakable joy like nothing I had ever experienced. Essentially, my joy is the result (a fruit of the spirit) of knowing without a shadow of a doubt I will be OK no matter what happens. This does not mean my life is perfect, nor does it mean I will not be troubled. What it does mean is, no matter what happens, in the end, I win! Jesus tells us in John 16:33, “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”  If I am in Christ, I have already overcome any trouble, trial, or sorry that may come my way. This not only makes me happy, but it fills my heart and soul with joy, and joy does not change based on circumstances. This is what makes joy profoundly different then happiness. My Joy comes from the Lord and it comes from knowing that nothing can snatch me out of His hands. In this, I can live always looking forward believing that the best is yet to come!! In this, I can be joyful regardless of my circumstances. I found that to pursue joy is to pursue Jesus. In other words, Jesus is Joy!

Joy to the world, the Lord has come!

J –Jesus (Our Savior, Prince of Peace, Messiah, King of Kings, the Great I am, The Way, The Truth, The Light!)

O – Occupies (To reside in and take up all available space.)

YYou (The person Jesus gave His life for so that in Him, you can be reconciled to God)

May the JOY of the Lord be what you pursue. Merry Christmas!

Click here if you would like a free download of my book DECIDE: A 6 Step Behavior Change Methodology that Works!

Kim Martin