Think about the joy you experience when you master something for the first time. Perhaps you learned a foreign language well enough to finally be able to communicate with native speakers in another country. Or you put in mile after mile and finally crossed the finish line of a marathon. Maybe you’ve been trying for years to earn your college degree, and you finally stepped up on that stage to collect your diploma. You feel a plethora of emotions, but joy is always at the forefront.
All good things come from God, and He rejoices in all good things. He is the only and true source of joy, and when we put our trust in Him, we can experience joy in all our circumstances. We can have joy in the midst of struggle, if our hope is in the Lord.
The mistake we often make is seeking joy outside of God. When we value ourselves according to someone else’s opinion of us, or the salary we earn, or our social position, we miss out on real joy. We miss the joy in the journey, the joy of discovery, the joy of a heart open to God. And we also miss the incredible opportunity to share the joy of the Lord with others. But when we’re filled with the joy that comes from God, we radiate love and pleasure to those around us and know true joy.
During this season of giving thanks, I encourage you to focus on the exceeding joy that God provides, trusting that He really does have good things in store for those who hope in Him.