Galatians 5:22-23 New International Version (NIV) 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Romans 14:17 English Standard Version (ESV) 17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
I want to be strong and serious but I can’t be strong unless I’m serious about Joy.
I can’t be strong without Joy. Strength is determined by the measure of Joy within me. The measure of Joy within me is determined by the amount of trust I have in God.
9 Then Nehemiah the governor, Ezra the priest and teacher of the Law, and the Levites who were instructing the people said to them all, “This day is holy to the Lord your God. Do not mourn or weep.” For all the people had been weeping as they listened to the words of the Law.
10 Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. (One of Joy’s requirements is to bring others into it) This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”
11 The Levites calmed all the people, saying, “Be still, for this is a holy day. Do not grieve.”
12 Then all the people went away to eat and drink, to send portions of food and to celebrate with great joy, because they now understood the words that had been made known to them
It doesn’t take faith to be full of sorrow. It does take faith to be full of Joy.
Matthew 14:22-33 The Passion Translation (TPT)
22 As soon as the people were fed, Jesus told his disciples to get into their boat and to go to the other side of the lake while he stayed behind to dismiss the people. 23 After the crowds dispersed, Jesus went up into the hills to pray. And as night fell he was there praying alone with God.
24 But the disciples, who were now in the middle of the lake, ran into trouble, for their boat was tossed about by the high winds and heavy seas.
25 At about four o’clock in the morning,[a] Jesus came to them, walking on the waves! 26 When the disciples saw him walking on top of the water, they were terrified and screamed, “A ghost!”
27 Then Jesus said, “Be brave and don’t be afraid. I am here!”[b]
28 Peter shouted out, “Lord, if it’s really you, then have me join you on the water!”
29 “Come and join me,”[c] Jesus replied.
So Peter stepped out onto the water and began to walk toward Jesus. 30 But when he realized how high the waves were, he became frightened and started to sink. “Save me, Lord!” he cried out.
31 Jesus immediately stretched out his hand and lifted him up and said, “What little faith you have! Why would you let doubt win?”
32 And the very moment they both stepped into the boat, the raging wind ceased. 33 Then all the disciples crouched down before him and worshiped Jesus.[d] They said in adoration, “You are truly the Son of God!”
Psalm 16:11 English Standard Version (ESV) 11 You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Psalm 16:11 The Passion Translation (TPT) 11 For you bring me a continual revelation of resurrection life, the path to the bliss that brings me face-to-face with you.
Hebrews 12:2 The Passion Translation (TPT) 2 We look away from the natural realm and we fasten our gaze onto Jesus who birthed faith within us and who leads us forward into faith’s perfection.[a] His example is this: Because his heart was focused on the joy of knowing that you would be his,[b] he endured the agony of the cross and conquered its humiliation,[c]and now sits exalted at the right hand of the throne of God!
2 Samuel 5:12-23
12 Now King David was told, “The Lord has blessed the household of Obed-Edom and everything he has, because of the ark of God.” So David went to bring up the ark of God from the house of Obed-Edom to the City of David with rejoicing.13 When those who were carrying the ark of the Lord had taken six steps, he sacrificed a bull and a fattened calf. 14 Wearing a linen ephod, David was dancingbefore the Lord with all his might, 15 while he and all Israel were bringing up the ark of the Lord with shouts and the sound of trumpets.
16 As the ark of the Lord was entering the City of David, Michal daughter of Saul watched from a window. And when she saw King David leaping and dancing before the Lord, she despised him in her heart.
17 They brought the ark of the Lord and set it in its place inside the tent that David had pitched for it, and David sacrificed burnt offerings and fellowship offerings before the Lord. 18 After he had finished sacrificing the burnt offerings and fellowship offerings, he blessed the people in the name of the Lord Almighty.19 Then he gave a loaf of bread, a cake of dates and a cake of raisins to each person in the whole crowd of Israelites, both men and women. And all the people went to their homes.
20 When David returned home to bless his household, Michal daughter of Saul came out to meet him and said, “How the king of Israel has distinguished himself today, going around half-naked in full view of the slave girls of his servants as any vulgar fellow would!”
21 David said to Michal, “It was before the Lord, who chose me rather than your father or anyone from his house when he appointed me ruler over the Lord’s people Israel—I will celebrate before the Lord. 22 I will become even more undignified than this, and I will be humiliated in my own eyes. But by these slave girls you spoke of, I will be held in honor.”
23 And Michal daughter of Saul had no children to the day of her death.
James 1 The Passion Translation (TPT)
Faith and Wisdom
2 My fellow believers, when it seems as though you are facing nothing but difficulties see it as an invaluable opportunity to experience the greatest joy that you can! 3 For you know that when your faith is tested[c] it stirs up power within you to endure all things. 4 And then as your endurance grows even stronger it will release perfection into every part of your being until there is nothing missing and nothing lacking.
5 And if anyone longs to be wise, ask God for wisdom and he will give it! He won’t see your lack of wisdom as an opportunity to scold you over your failures but he will overwhelm your failures with his generous grace.[d] 6 Just make sure you ask empowered by confident faith without doubting that you will receive. For the ambivalent person believes one minute and doubts the next. Being undecided makes you become like the rough seas driven and tossed by the wind. You’re up one minute and tossed down the next. 7–8 When you are half-hearted and wavering it leaves you unstable.[e] Can you really expect to receive anything from the Lord when you’re in that condition?
9 The believer who is poor still has reasons to boast, for he has been placed on high. 10 But those who are rich should boast in how God has brought them low and humbled them, for all their earthly glory will one day fade away like a wildflower in the meadow. 11 For as the scorching heat of the sun causes the petals of the wildflower to fall off and lose its appearance of beauty,[f] so the rich in the midst of their pursuit of wealth will wither away.
12 If your faith remains strong, even while surrounded by life’s difficulties, you will continue to experience the untold blessings of God! True happiness comes as you pass the test with faith, and receive the victorious crown of life promised to every lover of God!