Bearing the fruit of joy!
Joy springs forth from faith and trust.
And people from as far away as Issachar, Zebulun, and Naphtali brought food on donkeys, camels, mules, and oxen. Vast supplies of flour, fig cakes, raisins, wine, olive oil, cattle, and sheep were brought to the celebration. There was great joy throughout the land of Israel.
1 Chronicles 12:40
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Bearing the fruit of joy!
David is finally king of Israel. People come from all over Israel to celebrate the rise of this new king. Somehow the people knew something about David that they did not know about Saul. They were celebrating the fact that there was a new king with great enthusiasm. Somehow, they knew God was going to bless Israel because David was now king. They knew this was God’s perfect plan at work and it filled them with joy.
This is not the way people usually feel when there is a significant change taking place. More often than not, there is fear or concern whenever a change is coming. There is uncertainty about what the future holds and questions about how the change will affect them personally.
It would be great if we could all face change the way Israel faced this change of leadership. The people may not have known exactly why they had joy; it just welled up within them. The same can be said of us in our own walk with the Lord. There are times when joy seems to flow like a rushing river and there are other times when it is glaringly absent.
Joy is not easy to manufacture. It can be done but it is difficult to maintain. Joy is a fruit; one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit. As a fruit it grows spontaneously from the source that produces it. Joy springs forth from faith and trust. When faith and trust are nurtured in your life, joy is the natural byproduct. Obviously, our faith and trust must be in something that can generate joy. I can believe and trust an apple tree will produce oranges, but it never will; it can’t.
When we put our faith in God’s Word and trust Him implicitly, we are in the fertile ground that produces healthy fruit, including joy. As we nurture and tend to our faith and trust we will see fruit to grow naturally. We will experience joy in our lives without effort. Even in normally stressful or difficult times, there will be an underlying sense of joy in the faith and trust you have in the Lord.
If there is no joy in our lives it is often an indication that we need to tend to our faith and trust. The Holy Spirit might be trying to show you an area of your life that you have not fully surrendered to the Lord. Humble your heart and ask the Spirit to show you clearly what you are holding on to. Then lay it down at the feet of Jesus. Open your Bible and find something that speaks to that subject and then choose to believe it.
Joy is a choice; it is a choice to believe God’s Word and trust in Him. After you have made the right choice, celebrate. Jesus, strengthen our faith and trust and bear the fruit of joy in our lives.
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